10:24 AM Mon 2nd Nov, 2015 - Sweeper
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The Australian sports broadcasting arrangements have been turned upside down with the news that Optus has has bought the exclusive Australian rights to the English Premier League for three seasons, starting August 2016.

The news is a massive blow for FoxSports with the English Premier League being a key driver of subscription numbers.

The news could provide a significant financial benefit to the FFA and A-League clubs with the A-League rights coming up for renewal in 2017. It faces serious competition from Optus and a rejuvenated BeIn Sports as well as free to air TV in the battle for the A-League TV rights. FoxSports will need to retain the A-League rights or risk the complete loss of one of its key subscriber demographics. If FoxSports can retain the A-League rights it may be able to partially weather the storm for 3 years, retaining as many subscribers as possible, before seeking to regain the Premier League rights in 2019.

It is understood Optus will stream the games live via Fetch TV.
1:10 PM Sat 20th Jun, 2015 - Sweeper
Qatar's hopes of avoiding being stripped of the 2022 World Cup have suffered another major blow after a former FIFA executive admitted engaging in an illicit vote-swapping pact that handed them the tournament.

The Gulf State's shock victory in the discredited 2010 ballot prompted persistent rumours of vote-trading with the Spain-Portugal bid for the 2018 event - but a FIFA investigation found "no conclusive evidence" that it had taken place.

Now, one of the men who voted for Qatar has corroborated these claims by revealing he and at least two other executives agreed a deal that constituted a clear breach of bidding rules.

After four rounds of voting, Qatar beat the United States by 14 votes to eight, having secured the support of Brazil's Ricardo Teixeira, Spain's Angel Maria Villar Llona and Argentina's Julio Grondona.

Had the three men voted the other way, it would have been an 11-11 tie, with president Sepp Blatter holding the casting vote. ...
8:38 AM Wed 3rd Jun, 2015 - Admin
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FIFA president Sepp Blatter says he will resign from soccer's governing body, and has called for an extraordinary congress to elect his successor. However the extraordinary congress will not occur until December 2015 to March 2016. So Blatter will remain FIFA President for at least the next six months.

In the meantime the shredders can work full time for 6 months whilst Blatter supposedly "cleans up" FIFA. Further will Blatter really resign in six months time or will it be another one of his many backflips?

'I will organise an extraordinary congress for a replacement for me as president,' he said at a hastily convened press conference in Zurich on Tuesday.

'I will not stand. I am now free from the constraints of an election.

'I will be in a position to focus on profound reforms. For many years we have called for reforms. But these are not sufficient.'

Blatter will carry out his functions as FIFA president until a successor is elected. ...
11:17 AM Sat 30th May, 2015 - Admin
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Can FIFA, the world governing body of football, possibly have any credibility right now with Sepp Blatter winning yet another election? More to the point, why did this happen amid the latest and most controversial FIFA crisis?

The reason Blatter will remain as FIFA president for a fifth term -- maybe more, who knows? -- was made evident in both his acceptance speech, shortly after challenger Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein's concession and in his closing remarks to the congress. And it's all about what he called "my Ocean 11" but presumably meant to call "Oceania 11," referring to the 11 nations of the Oceania Football Confederation. It's far and away the smallest confederation by population -- less than 15 million -- and probably by football heritage and tradition.

Yet Blatter went out of his way to praise them in back-to-back speeches. He talked about how they needed respect and more than the 0.5 World Cup slots the likes of the Cook Islands, Vanuatu and American Samoa currently compete for. ...
9:06 AM Fri 19th Dec, 2014 - Admin
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A possible split between old and new FIFA Executive Committee members has emerged ahead of the vote on Friday on whether the Garcia report into World Cup bidding should be published.

It follows a suggestion by FIFA president Sepp Blatter at the previous ExCo meeting that only those members who were on the committee for the 2010 vote should have a say on the report's publication.

That would rule out more than half the current members and if Blatter tries to resurrect the move at the meeting in Marrakech on Friday he is likely to face sustained opposition.

One FIFA member told Press Association Sport: "If it is raised again I would strongly oppose it.''

American lawyer Michael Garcia's resignation as FIFA's ethics investigator has put further pressure on the world governing body, and the Executive Committee will vote on whether his report should be published but with names redacted. ...
10:14 AM Thu 18th Dec, 2014 - Admin
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Michael Garcia, the American lawyer who led the investigation into the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bid process, has resigned from the FIFA ethics committee in protest over the handling of his findings.

Garcia cited a "lack of leadership" at the top of FIFA in a resignation statement on Wednesday.

He also said he has lost confidence in the independence of his ethics committee colleague, German judge Hans-Joachim Eckert.

Though Garcia did not identify Sepp Blatter by name, he also revealed that the FIFA executive committee -- led by the longtime president -- made a failed complaint of unethical conduct against the former U.S. Attorney in September.

Speaking at the Club World Cup in Marrakech, Morocco, Blatter told The Associated Press he was stunned by Garcia's decision to resign.

"I'm just surprised," Blatter said. "It's all what I can say. Just that."

The former U.S. ...
11:57 PM Tue 16th Dec, 2014 - Admin
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A complaint by the man who spent two years investigating World Cup corruption claims for Fifa has been dismissed by football's governing body.

US lawyer Michael Garcia's findings were released as a 42-page summary by Fifa-appointed independent judge Hans-Joachim Eckert.

Garcia said his summary was "incomplete and erroneous" and he appealed against it to Fifa's Appeal Committee.

However, it has now ruled that Garcia's complaint is "not admissible".

In a statement, Fifa said German Eckert's summary was "neither legally binding nor appealable".

Garcia was appointed by Fifa to lead the investigation into the bidding process for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups in Russia and Qatar following a series of damaging allegations.

A complaint by two whistleblowers who said their confidentiality was compromised after they gave evidence to Garcia's inquiry has also been dismissed by Fifa.

Phaedra Al Majid and Bonita Mersiades spoke to Fifa about alleged corruption on condition of anonymity. ...
1:47 AM Mon 1st Dec, 2014 - Admin
The time has come to replace FIFA as the ruling body of Football. FIFA has become irrevocably tainted by the scandals surrounding the bidding for 2018 and 2022 World Cup.

A dossier of new corruption allegations was submitted to the House of Commons culture media and sport selects committee. The latest allegations include:
*an illegal vote swapping deal between Russia and Middle Eastern countries.
*Michel Platini was gifted a Picasso painting by Russia.
*Qatar bought the vote of a Fifa executive committee member through a huge investment in his holiday resort company.
*Qatar bought the vote of another committee member with a $A50m land deal.
*The vote of Franz Beckenbauer was touted for sale by two associates, in exchange for millions of dollars in consultancy fees.

Further more the integrity of the 14-8 vote in favour of Qatar for 2022 is in doubt because of two ongoing investigations involving voting members of FIFA’s Exectuive Committee according to the Daily Mail. ...
6:16 PM Sat 4th Oct, 2014 - Admin
Adelaide club MetroStars has won the 2014 National Premier League Grand Final. MetroStars defeated NSW Champions Bonnyrigg White Eagles 1-0 in Sydney to become National Champions.

The result demonstrates the strength of the local South Australian competition.

The National Premier League comprises the strongest clubs across Australia outside of the A-League. The league champions from each state play off culminating in a grand final to determine the national champion.
1:06 AM Tue 3rd Jun, 2014 - Admin
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It is now certain that Qatar will be stripped of the 2022 World Cup Finals.

The original decision to award the 2022 World Cup Finals was based on a flawed bidding process and this resulted in what is universally accepted at all levels of football as the very poor decision to select Qatar. There has been much discussion around the issues of hosting the Finals in Qatar but to keep it simple, it was a stupid decision.

How had a minuscule state of 2m people (of which approximately 80% are temporary workers) with virtually no football tradition or infrastructure and searing summer temperatures of 50C, beaten footballing countries with much stronger bids?

As stupid as the original decision has been shown to be, FIFA has persisted with its public line that Qatar 2022 will proceed.

But FIFA is now faced with what appears to be irrefutable evidence that Qatar paid significant illegal payments to facilitate the FIFA voting in favour of its 2022 World Cup bid. ...
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