Blatter: Fifa won't probe Qatar bid
Wednesday, 8th June 2011 at 14:30pm
Re-elected Fifa president Sepp Blatter has said that he will not initiate an investigation into Qatar's successful bid for the 2022 World Cup.
The 75-year-old, now in his fourth term as Fifa president, did add that he would not block the governing body's ethics or solutions committees should either of them wish to launch an inquiry.
Since December's controversial vote, Qatar's win has been subject to intense scrutiny from those inside and outisde of the game.
Many bid officials, players and fans were incensed that the tiny, resource-rich nation had been awarded the finals without any consideration given to the temperatures that will be encountered when the finals are scheduled to be held.
In summer in Qatar it can reach in excess of 50 degrees Celcius, which prompted former players Michel Platini and Franz Beckenbauer to express their concerns.
In recent weeks, the Qatar bid has been subject to a host of allegations that suggested that its members had bribed officials on Fifa's Executive Committee (ExCo).
Conservative MP Damien Collins and the Sunday Times newspaper alleged that two ExCo members - Cameroon's Issa Hayatou and Jacques Anouma of the Ivory Coast - had each been paid US$1.5 million (B45.5million) to back the Qatari bid.
The Middle-East nation's reputation then suffered another blow when suspended Fifa vice president Jack Warner made public an email he'd received from Fifa general secretary Jerome Valcke that suggested Qatar had bought the victory.
Valcke subsequently claimed that he used the term "bought" in a casual manner, refering to Qatar's financial clout and not suggesting any underhanded tactics.
Blatter, himself cleared by Fifa's ethics committee after being accused of knowing that bribery had taken place and not acting, is said to be unconvinced by the evidence against Qatar but has given the ethics and solutions committees free reign to conduct their own investigations.
Opera legend Placido Domingo, former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and Dutch footballing icon Johan Cruyff feature on the new solutions committee set up by Blatter in response to the allegations of corruption.