Dyke confirms FA backing for Infantino in Fifa president battle

Ross McLean
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Infantino is one of five candidates vying to become Fifa president (Source: Getty)

Football Association chiefs yesterday confirmed their intention to support acting European boss Gianni Infantino’s candidacy for the presidency of crisis-hit world governing body Fifa at next week’s election.

European governing body Uefa’s general secretary Infantino is one of five candidates bidding to replace outgoing president Sepp Blatter, who announced in June that he would stand down amid an escalating corruption scandal.

The FA had previously declared its support for former Uefa president Michel Platini, who in December was banned from all football-related activity for eight years by Fifa’s ethics committee.

“We decided that we would back Gianni Infantino,” said FA chairman Greg Dyke. “We did what we promised we would, I spoke to every candidate either in person or on the phone.

“We were impressed by Gianni. We were also impressed by Prince Ali but in the end we decided to go with the Uefa candidate.”

Switzerland’s Infantino, 45, last month stated that he intended to include within his manifesto plans for a World Cup to be staged over a whole region as opposed to one or two countries.

Infantino, Prince Ali bin al-Hussein of Jordan, Bahrain’s Skeikh Salman bin Ebrahim al-Khalifa, South Africa’s Tokyo Sexwale and Jerome Champagne of France are all vying to replace Blatter in the presidential election, which takes place on 26 February.