That FIFA was an inherently corrupt organisation has been an open secret for several years. The ability of many of its officials to enrich themselves in a variety of creative ways was also well-known. But the ability of the UK’s free and fearless press to appreciate that world football’s governing body was bent was patchy. Indeed, at the Super Soaraway Currant Bun, the hacks were in denial until very recently indeed.
Better late than never
That might not be apparent from today’s front page, which declares “Sun Backs European Union” (first time for everything, eh?) before declaring “LET’S BATTER BLATTER … Uefa must unite against Fifa tyrant”. Yes, now that Rupe’s downmarket troops have had it spelled out to them that around $100 million in bribes has been paid over the years, they have decided that Sepp Blatter is A Very Bad Person Indeed.
In this, they have been supported by Young Dave, who has called for the FIFA head man to go. “In my view, he should go. You cannot have accusations of corruption at this level, and on this scale, in this organisation, and pretend that the person currently leading it is the right person to take it forward” he said during a press conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the weekend.
I say, you press cheppies, look over thyah while I change my mind, will you? Jolly good sheow!
What a difference four and a half years makes: both Cameron and his favourite newspaper were singing a very different tune at the end of November 2010 after the BBC had broadcast an edition of Panorama three days before the vote that would decide who would host the World Cup in 2018. London, one of the candidates, had put forward a sound, low-risk and technically well-regarded bid.
“Is it frustrating that Panorama's doing this programme a few days before? Of course it is. But it's a free country and you have to roll with that” said Dave. His pals at the Sun went a lot further. In an editorial, the paper thundered “Today The Sun makes this plea to Mr Blatter and Fifa: don’t be put off by the BBC’s rehashing of ancient history. Despite BBC muckraking, The Sun trusts Fifa to put football first”.
It was bent, but the Beeb did it, honestly
And what happened? The London bid secured precisely two votes. Sports and Olympics minister Hugh Robertson mused “there are 22 Fifa exco delegates … the rumour was that only three of them bothered to call for the technical reports … If you have 22 exco members and they’re not bothering to read the technical reports, I think that probably tells you it’s not a football-based decision”. Not a football-based decision.
The Sun was incandescent with rage: “FIFA BUNGS RUSSIA THE WORLD CUP”. But still they pointed the finger at the Beeb, getting pundit Ian Wright to rant “THE timing of last night’s Panorama investigation into FIFA was disgraceful. The BBC is ridiculously unpatriotic”, and pretended that Rio Ferdinand was of similar mind. Now it’s all so different. One hates to say they were warned, but, well, they were warned.
But one thing is remarkably consistent over the years: the Sun is still a crap newspaper.
Expecting The Sun to know anything about bribery and an organisation run by a tyrant who won't relinquish his powerful position.
We say to The Sun "Don't be put off by the Beeb keeping to the truth" just continue with your rewriting history with under resourced columnists and owner agenda driven "journalists".
Who else are going to give us a laugh after being duly filleted by Zelo Street? (Other than the Mail Group, the Express, Star etc etc)
The oddly worded front page may have been created by someone who posted on the YouGov forum a couple of days ago. Under the European Union topic (complete with EU flag for a logo) he'd posted about how UEFA needed to take action - and 31 people had agreed with him! So at least 32 people think UEFA is part of the EU!!!!
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