Soccer's governing body was thrown into disarray when several of its leading officials, including vice-president Jeffrey Webb, were arrested in a dawn raid at the [Zurich] luxury lakeside hotel which for years has pampered FIFA visitors.
They were detained pending extradition to the United States where they face federal corruption charges.Odd, the Swiss sheltered child rapist Roman Polanski from extradition to the USA in 2010. But this is about something important; foosball. Which Europe takes very seriously, and doesn't appreciate being gamed at their own game;
Blatter has mastered the FIFA electoral system where the 209 member associations each hold one vote, meaning that tiny American Samoa holds the same voting rights as soccer powers like Brazil or Germany.Oh.
FIFA distributes revenue equally among its 209 members, a policy which helped the likes of Cape Verde to reach the African Nations Cup quarter-finals in 2013 and Costa Rica the World Cup quarter-finals last year.Starting to make sense.
Only Europe, which holds 53 votes, has pledged to vote against Blatter and, although some other associations may break ranks, those would be unlikely to result in more than a small dent in Blatter's majority.So Blatter can keep the money he controls from televised matches, flowing.
Outside Europe, federations see Blatter as the force which keeps the game truly global in the face of the growing financial power of a handful of elite European clubs and leagues.So, why does the U.S. Dept of Justice have a dog in this fight?