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Rediff.com  » Sports » FIFA president Blatter to decide before June whether to run again

FIFA president Blatter to decide before June whether to run again

January 16, 2014 20:33 IST

Sepp BlatterSepp Blatter will make a decision on whether to run for a fifth term as FIFA president before this year's Congress in Sao Paulo in June, the Swiss said on Thursday.

"Let me repeat what I have been saying. I am not yet tired enough to decide that I will retire," he told L'Equipe 21 TV.

"Having said that everything is open. I will certainly take a stand before this year's Congress."

Blatter, who will be 78 in March, hinted that UEFA president Michel Platini could succeed him even though the once-close relationship between the two has become strained in recent years.

"He helped me become president in 1998 in Paris where it was us against the rest. It would be a logical continuation," said the head of world soccer's ruling body.

Blatter ended Brazilian Joao Havelange's 24-year reign as president, winning the election in Paris against then-UEFA chief Lennart Johansson of Sweden.

He then defeated Issa Hayatou of Cameroon, president of the African confederation (CAF), in 2002 before winning a third term at the FIFA Congress five years later.

Blatter remained in charge in 2011 when Mohamed Bin Hammam of Qatar withdrew from the election just days after being accused of being involved in a bribes for votes scandal.

Bin Hammam was later banned from football for life.

A third man tipped as a possible presidential candidate is Frenchman Jerome Champagne who worked closely with Blatter at FIFA for 11 years.

Champagne was the president's 2002 campaign manager before leaving FIFA in 2010. He has since been working as an independent consultant to a number of FAs.

Image: Sepp Blatter

Photograph: Clive Mason/Getty Images

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