21 Jan 2014

FIFA president to face challenger

6:01 am on 21 January 2014

Jerome Champagne, a former French diplomat, has launched a bid for the FIFA presidency, but he appeared to immmediately undermine his campaign by saying he did not think he could beat Sepp Blatter should the Swiss incumbent stand for re-election.

55 year old Champagne worked at FIFA for 11 years from 1999 and is a former deputy Secretary General of the sport's governing body.

At a packed news conference in London he confirmed his plans to stand for the sport's most influential job with a programme of reform, aimed at limiting the influence of the richer sections of the game.

Having done that, Champagne would probably not beat Blatter in an election and might not even stand should his former boss attempt to hold on to power.

There could also be a challenge by UEFA's president Michel Platini.

FIFA has had only eight presidents in its 110-year history.