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FIFA President Gianni Infantino before third term

AEven without the support from Germany, Gianni Infantino can be sure of his third term as President of the World Football Association FIFA. After the deadline shortly before the start of the controversial World Cup in Qatar, the Swiss will be the only candidate for the election on March 16, 2023 in Kigali. FIFA announced this on Thursday. No further candidacy was received.

This means that the re-election of the 52-year-old, who had already been promised support from South America, Asia and Oceania, among others, is considered certain. The German Football Association and DFB President Bernd Neuendorf announced on Wednesday that they would not nominate a candidate.

Infantino denies the allegations

Infantino was elected to succeed Joseph Blatter in February 2016 and was confirmed in office by unopposed acclamation in June 2019. Now he is facing his third term in office, which is all a FIFA President can deny according to the statutes.

Infantino was previously General Secretary of European Football Union UEFA. FIFA emerged six years ago from scandal months with the arrests of several officials in Zurich and the bans on Infantino’s predecessor Blatter and UEFA President Michel Platini, who was actually considered the designated successor as FIFA boss. However, both cost millions in payment for their careers as officials – both have now been acquitted in Switzerland of the allegation of embezzlement at the time. Infantino is accused of being responsible for the downfall of Blatter and Platini.

The FIFA President rejects the allegations, as well as reports of other inconsistencies during his tenure. According to official statements, the 52-year-old can be sure of the support of the major confederations from Asia (AFC) and Africa (Caf). Up to 211 FIFA member associations vote.

Unlike in many parts of the world, Infantino from Germany did not receive a nomination. “Many associations have already signaled their support for the incumbent President Gianni Infantino. Nevertheless, with this decision we want to express that we would have liked FIFA to have made a clearer commitment to human rights and a greater commitment to humanitarian issues,” said Neuendorf, who spoke to Infantino in Qatar at the beginning of the month together with Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faeser .

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