Nigeria Football Federation President Amaju Pinnick has come out to defend FIFA after a leaked document revealed that the world apex football body was in a crime for intervening in both Manchester City and PSG’s financial fair play matters.
German newspaper alleged that the world football governing body helped both the Manchester City and Paris Saint Germain club’s when there was a case of breach of contract, with investigation linking FIFA President Gianni Infantino and a host of other senior official.
However, Pinnick has revealed that both the Nigerian Football Federation and the Confederation of African football remains loyal to the government of Infantino.
“The Leaks are hopelessly weak and it does not affect the fact that Africa sticks with Gianni,” Pinnick declared. He stressed: “The entire NFF Executive Committee including myself remain avowed loyalists of Mr. Infantino and we will continue to give him our support.
“For us, the hawkers of these weak leaks are thoroughbred blackmailers whose objective is to try and smear the reputation of persons who are working so hard and diligently to reposition FIFA.
In the last three years FIFA under Gianni Infantino has gone for sanitization.
“Financially, socially and in the area of transparency, FIFA has turned the positive corner from the crisis and credibility deficits of 2015. We now have a FIFA that is truly global in outlook and pursuing the interests of all six Confederations and 211 Member Associations without any fear or favour. Some persons are definitely not happy about that,” observed the CAF top chief.
Pinnick further insisted that the commitment of Mr. Infantino and the FIFA Administration to projects and programmes that impact positively on the game in the global scenes outweighs whatever the disgruntled leakers can put in the public sphere.
“Nigeria and – I have good reason to believe – the whole of Africa is not bothered by whatever the haters have. We stick with Mr. Infantino and the current administration at FIFA.
“When Mr. Infantino came into office, he opened all the windows to inclusiveness, diversity and true development across board.
“Today, there are six female members of the FIFA Council and 39 women in the Council and different committees. The FIFA Administration is composed of 45% women and is headed by a glorious and highly-qualified African in Ms. Fatma Samoura.
“There are plans for a 48-team FIFA World Cup that will see more of the smaller countries enjoying the limelight and financial benefits of playing at that highest level, and that could happen as early as Qatar 2022.
“FIFA’s financial situation has improved from the extreme low of $930million during the 2015 crisis to about $6billion in the current cycle.
“As a body committed to harvesting the best for its people, CAF strongly aligns with Mr. Infantino’s vision for the 48-team World Cup, as well as the plans for a World Nations League and an expanded FIFA Club World Cup, which all means more money for development, particularly in our developing climes.
“With Mr. Infantino, Ms. Samoura and the current administration, Africa (including our country Nigeria) is guaranteed meaningful growth at a great pace, which is something some persons and groups are pretty scared of,” he further observed.