It seems the stupidity, or immunity, of some FIFA insiders knows no bounds as Argentinian FIFA Executive Committee member Julio Grandona revealed in an interview with German press agency DPA that he only had one request from England in exchange for a vote for their 2018 World Cup Bid; he wanted the Falkland Islands back. Now before I even get into the problems with that request, hears what he actually said:
After deriding the English media for its recent criticisms of the “FIFA family,” whatever that means, he then recalled the meeting he held with the English bid team in which he asked for that one little thing:
“With the English bid I said: Let us be brief. If you give back the Falkland Islands, which belong to Argentina, you will get my vote. They then became sad and left.”ck.
Now beyond the obvious absurdity of his request, and the hilarity of “They then became sad and left,” there’s a really serious problem here. FIFA is supposed to be trying to stamp out the soccer nationalism that has led to the recent rioting in Italy by Serb fans, and marked the beginning of the Balkan wars for that matter, by saying no to the racism and hatred it engenders. Mr. Grandona has obviously not taken this message to heart in a typical display of Executive Committee hypocrisy. What’s more, is this sure to further stoke the anger of the English press and bring up bitter memories of the Falklands War of 1982 in which Argentina invaded the Falklands only to have their navy, air force, and army largely annihilated by the British Armed Forces. To this day you can hear the chants ringing out from the English fans when they play the Argentines: “Where is your navy? At the bottom of the sea”
Then we have the fact the unbelievable fact that the FA reached out to the Argentine FA for support, something unthinkable only a few years ago, to have it rebuffed in this way is disgraceful both for FIFA and for Mr. Grandona. But then again…its is FIFA….
Written by: Matthew Wall, editor, soccerprose.com
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