Gianni Infantino reelected FIFA president

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Gianni Infantino was re-elected as president of football’s world governing body FIFA for a second term.

FILE PHOTO-REUTERS

The 49-year-old Swiss-Italian lawyer ran unopposed and during a lengthy speech before FIFA’s congress highlighted the accomplishment of his first term at the helm with an eye toward FIFA and football’s future.

“Nobody talks about a crisis at FIFA any more or rebuilding it from scratch. Nobody talks about scandals or corruption, we talk about football. We can say that we’ve turned the situation around,” Infantino said.

Infantino took over the organization in 2016, succeeding Sepp Batter who was forced out following a corruption scandal that brought severe financial problems and embarrassment.

Blatter was banned from FIFA for six years in 2017.

The scandals, which led to Blatter’s downfall also resulted in criminal charges against a number of FIFA and other officials.

Infantino said that after experiencing its “worst crisis”, FIFA now had “a solid financial situation as never before”.

He promised member associations would continue to benefit after receiving $1.1 billion between 2015 and 2018, up from $326 million in the previous cycle.

Infantino’s reelection comes two days before the FIFA Women’s World Cup Tournament begins in Paris on Friday.

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