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Corruption arrests could be tipping-point for delivery of root-and-branch reform of Fifa – Dr David Webber

Dr David WebberDr David Webber from the University of Warwick’s Department of Politics and International Studies is an expert on the cultural political economy of football.

He said: “Fifa has long been criticised for its corruption. It is frequently compared to a mafia family, with its head Sepp Blatter once described as an “untouchable, Don Corleone” figure in world football.

“The arrests this morning of up to fifteen of its senior officials (not including Blatter), however, has come as something of a surprise, not least to Fifa itself, which, at the time of writing, appears to be reeling and seeking clarity over the detentions. The arrests, made by the Swiss Federal Office of Justice on behalf of authorities in the United States, focus upon Fifa’s representatives from the Concacaf (Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football) and appear to relate to Fifa-sponsored activities in this region.

“Even though it remains at its early stages, the significance of this development cannot be overstated. For the first time, a national regulatory body has collected what it believes to be damning evidence which will provide the basis of a thorough investigation into the financial affairs and governance structure of one of the world’s most powerful organisations. It may yet prove, at last, to be the tipping-point for the delivery of root-and-branch reform of Fifa.”

Notes to Editors:

Dr David Webber is available for interviews.We have in-house broadcasting facilities for TV and radio. We have an ISDN line for radio and a remote camera (Globelynx TV Ready Network) for television interviews.

Contact Lee Page, Communications Manager at The University of Warwick. Tel: +44 (0)2476 574 255. Mob: +44 (0)7920 531 221. Email:


Lee Page

Communications Manager, University of Warwick

Tel: +44 (0)2476 574 255

Mob: +44 (0)7920 531 221

Email: l dot page at warwick dot ac dot uk