Saturday 23 September 2017

Blatter done by damn democracy

dfanningg@independent.ie

That Was The Week cartoon
That Was The Week cartoon

Dion Fanning

The first rule of politics, according to Lyndon Johnson, is knowing how to count. As we learn more about FIFA and their ways, thanks in part to Sepp Blatter's decision to unburden himself in his time of need, we see that there were other competing rules in the densely political world of FIFA.

Knowing how to count might have been less important in a world where there were arrangements that would circumvent the counting. There was a "gentleman's agreement", as Blatter put it in his interview with the Financial Times on Friday, that the World Cup would go to Russia in 2018 and the USA in 2022. "It was behind the scenes. It was diplomatically arranged to go there," he explained.

In front of the scenes, lots of people were getting quite excited about how they were doing in the bidding process, even if the excitement always seemed misplaced. It is hard to forget the giddiness in England when it was announced in the days leading up to the vote in 2010 that Vladimir Putin had decided not to travel to Zurich.

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