Saturday 21 October 2017

Key points from Garcia report into FIFA 2018 and 2022 World Cup bidding process

Michael Garcia. Photo: Getty Images
Michael Garcia. Photo: Getty Images

FIFA has published a controversial internal report into the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bidding process.

Produced by FIFA's chief ethics investigator Michael Garcia in 2014, the report's contents have been kept secret until German newspaper Bild obtained a copy and started publishing it on Tuesday.

The vote took place in December 2010, and saw the 2018 World Cup given to Russia and the 2022 World Cup to Qatar.

Here, Press Association Sport takes a look at some of the key points of the 400-paged report on the conduct of the nine bid teams.

SPAIN/PORTUGAL 2018

- The FIFA Investigatory Chamber highlighted a "disappointing lack of candor by one bid team" after email communications relating to the activities of Spain/Portugal were not forthcoming.

- All gifts the Spanish Football Federation had given to FIFA Executive Committee members were in accordance with ethics rules, including "ham and cheese" and "basket with typical Christmas products", such as Spanish wine, nougat and sweets.

- Recommendations for future rules concerning data preservation and for potential restrictions on future bids by Spain to host the World Cup were noted.

AUSTRALIA 2022

- The Australia 2022 bid team "reportedly bought a pearl necklace as a gift for the wife of FIFA Executive Committee member Jack Warner".

- There were "efforts by Australia 2022, its consultants, and Mr (Franz) Beckenbauer to conceal certain key relationships, including over a 'Memorandum of Understanding' between the German and Australian Football Associations".

- The conduct of three consultants, all of whom had "deep ties to football" - Peter Hargitay, who had been an adviser to then long-time FIFA president Sepp Blatter as well as working on England's 2018 bid; Andreas Abold, who helped on Germany's successful 2006 World Cup bid, and Fedor Radmann, who had a close working relationship with Beckenbauer - was called into question.

- The Football Federation of Australia's approach to funding development projects in Africa and elsewhere "is a further unfortunate example of bid teams using money that should be awarded based upon humanitarian considerations to curry favour with officials eligible to vote on December 2, 2010."

BELGIUM/HOLLAND 2018

- No issues were identified.

ENGLAND 2018

- England 2018 placed "particular emphasis on winning over Warner", who was then a FIFA vice-president and the president of CONCACAF and "often accommodated his wishes, in apparent violation of bidding rules and the FIFA code of ethics".

- England 2018 "gave the appearance that it sought to confer a personal benefit on Mr Warner in order to influence his vote''.

- England's response to these "improper demands - in at a minimum always seeking to satisfy them in some way - damaged the integrity of the ongoing bidding process.''

- Former FIFA vice-president and president of the Oceania Football Confederation Reynald Temarii ''also saw an opportunity to help his resource-challenged confederation'' while the report also concluded there is "sufficient evidence to establish a prima facie case'' that Nicolas Leoz, the former president of South American Football Confederation CONMEBOL, ''improperly sought a knighthood from the bid team in violation of the ethics rules''.

- FIFA vice-president Geoff Thompson, who replaced Lord Triesman as chairman of England 2018, agreed to a vote exchange with Chung Mong-Joon of South Korea, having been in a meeting with HRH Prince William, the FA's president, and then British Prime Minister David Cameron.

JAPAN 2022

- The Japan Football Association repeatedly gave Executive Committee members - and, in some instances, their spouses - gifts worth far more than bidding guidelines, including a 1,000 US Dollar (£780) pendant, digital cameras and a 2,000 US Dollar (£1,500) Japanese traditional handcrafted clutch bag.

KOREA 2022

- The report found "troubling issues with Korea 2022's Global Football Fund proposal and how it about how it planned to fulfil the promise to distribute 777million US Dollar (£606m), with letters creating "at least the appearance of a conflict or an offer of benefits to Executive Committee members in an effort to influence their votes".

- The conduct of Mr Chung and the Global Football Fund issue should have been reported by then FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke Football Fund issue to the FIFA Ethics Committee for further examination.

QATAR 2022

- One specific incident concerning "government involvement" with the Qatar 2022 bid raised concerns, in January 2010 when the Qatari Emir met FIFA Executive Committee members Julio Grondona, Nicolas Leoz, and Ricardo Teixeira, as well as former FIFA President Joao Havelange, at the Itanhanga Golf Club in Rio, Brazil. The report highlighted travel arrangements and also gifts

- Otherwise, on government involvement, "no evidence of any improper activity by the bid team or any football officials has been uncovered."

- Qatar 2022's relationship with a consultants Sandro Rosell and Amadou Diallo also raised some concerns.

- The Aspire Academy for Sports Excellence was "a valuable asset for Qatar's bid team", and the "targeting of Aspire-related resources to curry favour with Executive Committee members created the appearance of impropriety".

- There were some "troubling issues" surrounding some aspects of payments and expenses for a friendly between Brazil and Argentina in November 2010.

- Concerns were raised over Qatar 2022 sponsoring the CAF Congress in Angola for 1.8million US Dollar (£1.4m).

RUSSIA 2018

- The report stated there was no evidence of collusion of a Russian Bid with another bid committee or member association; no violation of FIFA Rules of Conduct on gifts, grant of benefits or development assistance; no undue influence exerted on FIFA ExCo Members in an attempt to secure votes.

- The conclusions did reference only partial compliance with reporting requirements on contact made with FIFA ExCo Members.

- The Russian team did not always comply by informing FIFA prior to such meetings, sometimes doing so retroactively, and there was evidence in some of the documents provided of meetings which had not been recorded with FIFA at all.

- ''Insufficient evidence was found in the documents made available and testimonies given suggesting that the Russia Bid Committee had attempted to unduly influence the Bidding Process''.

Press Association

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