Global reaction to Sepp Blatter's decision to resign

AP News
|
Posted: Jun 03, 2015 2:22 AM
Global reaction to Sepp Blatter's decision to resign

Reaction from around the globe to Sepp Blatter's sudden announcement Tuesday that he will step down as FIFA president amid a corruption scandal:

___

"It was a difficult decision, a brave decision, and the right decision." — Michel Platini, president of European soccer federation UEFA.

___

"A good day for FIFA and for football ... Change is finally coming. I said on Friday that the day would come sooner or later. Here it is! Now we should, responsibly and calmly, find a consensual solution worldwide in order to start new era of dynamism, transparency and democracy in FIFA." — Former Portugal great and one-time FIFA presidential candidate Luis Figo.

___

"I think that it is the right move from Sepp Blatter and I think we have to look to the future ... I am at the disposal of all the national associations who want a change, including all of those who were afraid to make a change." — Jordan's Prince Ali bin al-Hussein, who lost to Blatter in last Friday's election:

___

"We highly respect this decision of President Blatter to step down and to initiate the necessary reforms — and to make way for a new leadership of FIFA to drive these changes." — IOC President Thomas Bach.

___

"He says he won't step down until the next president is elected. If there is no specific reason (for his resignation) there is no need for him to step down. I think there is an obligation to explain this." — FIFA Executive Committee member and Japan Football Association vice-president Kozo Tashima.

___

"We are at an important moment for the game, a moment that we must not squander. CONCACAF stands ready to assist in the process of rebuilding FIFA in a way that strengthens the game for many years to come." CONCACAF President Alfredo Hawit.

___

"FIFPro welcomes the decision of FIFA president Sepp Blatter to resign as this creates an overdue and unique opportunity to fundamentally reform the governance of football. ... The effort will fail without the direct involvement of the players." — world players' union FIFPro.

___

"I was kind of expecting that the pressures — the external pressures — would be sustained, and therefore Mr. Blatter would soon have to retreat. Because he should." Raymond Tim Kee, President of the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association.

___

Michel Platini "suits the role of president of FIFA better than anyone else ... (He is) a more prepared and experienced person." — Russian Football Union acting president Nikita Simonyan.

___

"The CBF sees the announcement of the resignation of Joseph Blatter with surprise. It's a decision that is personal and deserves our most profound understanding." — Brazil's football confederation, the CBF.

___

"It is a good afternoon. I think it's brilliant for world football. This is the start of something new." — England's Football Association chairman Greg Dyke.

___

"I wanted change for the FIFA and this may be a very big step in the right direction. Let's truly accomplish." — Dutch FA chief and one-time FIFA presidential candidate Michael van Praag on Twitter.

___

"Blatter wasn't sole responsible, more have to follow. Transparency and voting reform, then we move on and bring back ethics."— Manchester City and Belgium defender Vincent Kompany on Twitter.

___

"The announcement today by President Blatter represents an exceptional and immediate opportunity for positive change within FIFA. I commend him for making a decision that puts FIFA and the sport we love above all other interests." — U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati.

___

"I want the full facts around the bidding to be known. If there was fairness and transparency, then good, well done. If it is found there was improper behavior in any way they must have a look at whether they should reopen the processes." — Simon Johnson, member of England's team which unsuccessfully bid to stage the 2018 World Cup.

___

"We welcome his belated announcement today but this is only the beginning of the process of change we need to see from FIFA. I sincerely hope this is the first step to a new FIFA that can command the confidence and respect of the football world once again." — British Culture Secretary John Whittingdale.

___

"As I announced following the election at FIFA Congress, I simply could not countenance serving on the FIFA Executive Committee alongside Mr. Blatter. I respect his decision but am pleased he is standing aside and by the clear determination for real change within FIFA. This in turn allows me to reconsider my position." — English FA Vice Chairman David Gill.

___

"His fall will come as a tsunami to every corrupt leader in the confederations around the world. ... We need the corrupt ones in prison, and we need the contributions from great idols, good sports leaders and football lovers." — Former Brazil great Romario.

___

"This man (Blatter) was probably and surely under a lot of pressure and he resigned from the game and now it's time to reboot FIFA and reboot the game of football and that's the most important." — Former France winger David Ginola, who previously tried unsuccessfully to stand as a FIFA presidential candidate.