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Maduro Mutko claims dismissed by Federation Internationale de Football Association

14 Septembre 2017

But travel problems meant Maduro will answer questions from legislators on the culture, media and sport committee on Wednesday morning. "I think he made the wrong choice".

Maduro confirmed that the decision to ban Mutko was the main reason for his departure after just eight months in the role earlier this year.

The committee says in a statement that the aim is to "explore the pressure and interference Maduro experienced at Federation Internationale de Football Association". Maduro said Vesel called him from the airport to say he felt "very uncomfortable" but that Infantino had asked him to go.

"In that meeting, the secretary general made clear that it was extremely problematic - more than that - she said that we needed to find a solution to declare Mr Mutko eligible because, otherwise, the presidency itself would be in question; the World Cup would be a disaster - that was her view - and, as a effect, the continued presidency of Mr Infantino would also be in question", Maduro the Select Committee.

"There is a culture in the institution. that is extremely resistant to accountability, to independent scrutiny, to transparency, to prevention of conflicts of interest", Maduro told the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee.

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He added: "More than that, she said we needed to find a solution to declare Mr. Mutko eligible because otherwise the presidency itself would be in question, the World Cup would be a disaster, that was her view, and the continued presidency of Mr. Infantino would also be in question".

Infantino argued that they were misapplying Fifa's rules, Maduro told the committee, but said that he held firm and maintained that the decision was correct. "I never talked to him again", said Maduro, director of the global governance programme at the European University Institute in Florence.

He argued that it derived from self-interest and a lack of good governance at national associations and the regional confederations, and is "systemic" so that it would be hard to challenge even if a president were determined to do so.

He said Federation Internationale de Football Association president Gianni Infantino "realised that if he wanted to survive politically, he had to choose to protect the independence of bodies, and therefore to keep us in place, or answer to his constituency".

The reforms were introduced following an unprecedented series of corruption scandals involving longstanding senior executives, but Fifa's commitment to them has been seriously questioned following the ending of Maduro's tenure, and that of the two independent committee chairmen, Cornel Borbély and Hans-Joachim Eckert in Bahrain.

Maduro Mutko claims dismissed by Federation Internationale de Football Association