An interview with Daniela Wurbs from Football Supporters Europe
Were you surprised at Blatter’s resignation?
“Of course, we were surprised, but I had been warned before hand. We issued a statement calling for him to resign on the same day, so him resigning was a nice coincidence.”
What do you think is the main factor behind it?
I find it difficult to speculate. On one hand I am sure that the investigations are getting closer and closer to home, including friends and family.
On the other, this could be considered quite clever... On Friday he triumphed over UEFA and now he has resigned, so now UEFA are under more pressure to make radical reforms, and propose the right candidate.
It could be one, the other, or a little bit of both.
What do you expect UEFA to do at this point?
We very much hope UEFA will stick to their word, and use this momentum in order to initiate the radical reform it needs. This restructuring has given them room to maneuver and now they need to act.
Who do you expect to be the next FIFA president?
It remains to be seen, and we can just hope that it will be a better president than Sepp and that the modernizers will win. I would advise the football world and media outlets to keep FIFA under scrutiny and not let go of the, because the next 6 months will be critical. Blatter will certainly use this momentum to establish a successor, and I very much doubt that it will be a reformer.
How do you feel about the reforms that Scala mentioned following Blatter’s resignation?
It is a clever move by Blatter to announce the reforms, but at the same time, if the FIFA members reject them, it will come out as a success for Blatter.
One mention that Blatter made yesterday was that he cannot initiate the reforms if he is alone in the process, and that it depends on the will of other members. I guess that this was an attempt at harming UEFA’s reputation as they themselves blocked the limitation of terms in office, against Blatter’s wishes.
"The situation that FIFA is in has mostly been created by the great lack of transparency in and around the organisation and its officials. This is what needs to change most because it allows greater scrutiny. As the chief investigator of the FBI said, corruption allegedly seems to have been an integral part of the FIFA system .
What can fans really do to make sure that fifa holds itself accountable?
Fans and the wider media landscape, will keep a closer eye than ever on FIFA for the next 6 months. FIFA is very unstable at the moment, so it more likely than before that the actions of the wider public and respected experts can have an actual effect on changes within the organisation and on the development of future reforms.
We should not over-estimate this impact, but it is more likely to have an effect now then ever before. There used to be a culture of arrogance at FIFA that dominated everything they did, so now that they are undergoing a phase of instability, they are more shakable.
Our European fan congress this summer fans from across Europe will discuss how they can impact this process. We invite all fans from across Europe and beyond who share this sentiment to join us in Belfast.