Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


Champagne meal turns sour amid FIFA battle

Former FIFA Secretary General and French diplomat, Jerome Champagne. PHOTO/File

Former FIFA Secretary General and French diplomat, Jerome Champagne. PHOTO/File

PARIS, January 29 – French FIFA candidate Jerome Champagne went to a chic Paris restaurant seeking the support of his country’s football federation and left with profanities ringing in his ear.

Champagne told AFP that he was “insulted” in a meeting with French Football Federation president Noel le Graet who told him he would be backing UEFA secretary general Gianni Infantino for the FIFA presidency in a February 26 vote.

Champagne, a former FIFA deputy secretary general and one of five candidates for the FIFA presidency, said he would protest Le Graet’s decision not to even let him speak to the FFF executive.

In response, Le Graet called him a “little man”, used another expletive, threw down the money for the meal and then walked out, according to Le Parisien newspaper, whose account was confirmed by other football sources.

“I was insulted,” Champagne told AFP, also confirming the media reports.

Le Graet, a frequently outspoken character, would not comment on the meeting.

During a meeting of France’s Professional Football League, where Le Graet represents the national federation, some officials said that Champagne should be heard.

If elected FIFA president, Champagne would be an automatic member of the International Olympic Committee and so could vote for Paris to get the 2024 Olympics, Le Parisien said some LFP members reasoned.

Le Graet was reported to have responded: “I don’t give a damn about the Olympics.”

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Champagne is considered an outsider in the FIFA race in which he is up against Infantino, Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim al Khalifa, head of the Asian confederation, Tokyo Sexwale of South Africa and Prince Ali bin al Hussein, a former FIFA vice president from Jordan.

Sheikh Salman and Infantino, who secured the support of the South American confederation on Thursday, are considered the frontrunners.


Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


More on Capital Sports


NAIROBI, Kenya, May 25 – There is light at the end of the tunnel. After failed promises over the last three years since its...


NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 13 – Kenya’s history making Daniel Adongo, the first Kenyan to play in America’s National Football League (NFL), is now living...


NAIROBI, Kenya, June 8 – Olympic Champion Caster Semenya and wife Violet Raseboya have hinted that they might be expecting a baby in a...


NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 27 – DStv and GOtv subscribers are in for a treat of the world’s best football this week as the 2020-21...

© 2022 Capital Digital Media. Capital Group Limited. All Rights Reserved