Tuesday Kickoff: Former FIFA VP received Qatar payment; Moyes losing support; and more

JackWarnerBlack (ISIPhotos.com)

Photo by ISIPhotos.com

By DAN KARELL

Disgraced former FIFA Vice-President Austin “Jack” Warner is implicated in yet another controversy surrounding the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

Warner and his sons were allegedly paid close to $2 million from a company owned by former Qatari FIFA official Mohammed Bin Hamman, according to a report by The Telegraph. The payments came in December 2010, just two weeks after Qatar won the right to host the 2022 World Cup.

The report adds that FBI agents are currently investigating Warner, with the help of his son Daryan, who lives in Miami. The FBI has been looking into this case since March 2013.

Warner, a former CONCACAF President, has previously been accused of offering and accepting bribes, withholding bonuses from the Trinidad and Tobago national team, embezzlement, and many other cases of fraud. Warner is currently a member of parliament in his native Trinidad and Tobago.

Qatar’s World Cup local organizing committee has declared its innocence, claiming that it complied with all of FIFA’s rules during the bidding process.

Here are some more stories to kick off your Tuesday:

MOYES LOSING SUPPORT IN MAN UNITED BOARD

With every disappointing Manchester United result, flames fan the hot seat on which David Moyes sits.

As Man United head into their UEFA Champions League match against Olympiakos, needing to overcome a 2-0 deficit, Moyes is beginning to lose his support from on the board of directors, according to a report in ESPN FC. The report states that Moyes still has the backing of the Glazer family, which owns the club, but they’re more open to the idea of making a change in manager.

Moyes was picked by Sir Alex Ferguson to take over for the legendary manager following the 2012-2013 season. However, United has struggled to impress this season and currently sit in seventh place in the English Premier League, 18 points behind first place Chelsea.

United fell, 3-0, to archrivals Liverpool last Sunday.

MESSI’S AGENT ASKING FOR NINE FIGURE CONTRACT EXTENSION

Barcelona and Lionel Messi’s representatives have begun to discuss the Argentine’s seventh new contract with the club, and the initial request from Messi’s side would put him among the richest athletes in the world.

Multiple reports in Spain state that Messi’s representatives are asking for a net salary of 25 million euros ($35 million) per season for five years. Due to Spanish tax laws, that would require Barcelona to spend an extra 25 million euros per year, meaning the Catalan side would be on the hook for 250 million euros over the course of the contract.

Messi most recently signed a deal in December 2012 for a contract through June 2018. The 26-year-old has returned from multiple hamstring and thigh problems in 2014 and hit the ground running, scoring 15 goals in all competitions since Jan. 1.

QUICK KICKS

Barcelona have denied reports that manager Gerardo Martino will leave the club in June. (REPORT)

The Spanish club however did announce the extension of defender Marc Bartra through June 2017. (REPORT)

Former Tottenham and Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas has signed a two-year deal to take over Zenit St. Petersburg. (REPORT)

AC Milan have received a huge boost with news that Stephen El-Shaarawy set to return in April. (REPORT)

Cagliari owner Massimo Cellino has been fined 600,000 euros by an Italian court for tax evasion. (REPORT)

The FA is expected to reject Hull City owner Assem Allam’s request to change the name to Hull Tigers. (REPORT)

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What do you think of these reports? Surprised to hear a report on Warner allegedly accepting a payment from a Qatari official? Not surprised to hear about it? How do you see this affecting the 2022 World Cup? Do you see Moyes surviving through the end of the season?

Share your thoughts below.

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47 Responses to Tuesday Kickoff: Former FIFA VP received Qatar payment; Moyes losing support; and more

  1. William the Terror says:

    Sir Alex! Tanned, rested and ready!

    “Look lads, we’re 18 points adrift with only 27 points left to play for. But we can do this. All we need is a winning streak, “proper” officiating and a few well-timed fires.”

    Sack the Mouse.

    • Steven C says:

      I don’t know why, but your comment made me want to listen to P.M. Dawn’s “Set Adrift on Memory Bliss”.

    • biff says:

      Goal.com had a story yesterday saying that several senior Man U players “were understood to have been mocking” Moyes’ “perilous situation.” If this is true, that Moyes has lost key elements of the locker room, then he could be gone by the end of the week if Man U is knocked out of the Champions League on Wednesday.

      link to goal.com

    • biff says:

      If you want a good laugh about Sir Alex and Moyes, I saw this photo linked on another web site yesterday.

      link to twitter.com

  2. Jack Del says:

    Okay, this opens up new possibilities.

    At what point does the US DOJ step in on the Qatar matter now that actual evidence of bribery is being uncovered.

    • Increase0 says:

      Would be nice. The corrupt foreign practices act is pretty well enforced. We just need to convince a prosecutor to look into it. Fifa does operate in our territory so it makes them a target.

    • James says:

      I hate to say it but I really don’t see any way the WC is moved. They’ve started stadium and infrastructure construction. Any investors would loose millions.

      Even if ironclad evidence is found, there’s too much money flowing to stop it.

      • William the Terror says:

        Except for the fact that the “investors” are also the same wealthy royals who made the bribes. The same investors who have turned a blind eye to the brutal mistreatment and multiple deaths of Nepalese immigrant workers who sleep in unseated/uncooked tool sheds in groups of thirty and who live on one meal a day. Yeah, punishing those investors would be just plain wrong.

        • William the Terror says:

          Unheated and uncooled. Not unseated and uncooked, although those likely apply too.

        • James says:

          I agree – I’m not arguing with you on any of this. But looking at it from realistic (pessimistic, perhaps) perspective, I don’t see any way FIFA rescinds the bid.

      • Dr. Lecter says:

        Bill Archer at bigsoccer.com says this wasn’t about the World Cup, but instead about bin Hammam’s presidential bid. link to bigsoccer.com

  3. El Homer Simpson says:

    So corruption as usual with the FIFA voting. And I’m sure Qatar will keep the World Cup.

    • CS says:

      I feel very comfortable with the Quatari declaration of innocence, “[we] complied with all of FIFA’s rules during the bidding process.” They didn’t invent bribery at FIFA. Some rules are written, some are understood.

  4. Brett says:

    Qatar did comply with official FIFA rules for bribes. This will change nothing, just news outlets doing what they do. FIFA doesn’t care that he took bribes, and the FBI probably just wants to make sure he’s not trafficking drugs or anything.

    • MN Footie says:

      Right – Warner did this sort of thing for decades, and (he claims) doing it to help guys like Blatter. Definitely makes it look, though, like CONCACAF was (is?) among the worst of the worst. Wonderful.

      And the beat goes on…

      • Quit whining about soccer in the US says:

        Maybe CONCACAF, in this case the FBI, is the only one that goes after people who take bribes ?

        Probably not that far fetched in my mind.
        I don’t think I am alone in thinking/guessing he isn’t the only one.

        • MN Footie says:

          Yeah, I can see that. I don’t think it’s an unreasonable statement to suggest that law enforcement in the US is generally more on the up and up than in many other regions of the world. So these things get uncovered here more often. I can dig it.

  5. Expat4455 says:

    Don’t know how it will turn out at Stamford Bridge but I have a good feeling. Mancini out-coached Mourinho in Istanbul and I think he can do it again.

  6. Expat4455 says:

    I think Moyes is gone. Whether it will be in the summer or in the next week or so it’s hard to tell. Maybe if Olympiakos wins, or even ties, the match tomorrow, Moyes may be gone sooner.

  7. KP1935 says:

    “Qatar’s World Cup local organizing committee has declared their innocence, claiming that they complied with all of FIFA’s rules during the bidding process.”

    “The payments came just two weeks after Qatar won the right to host the 2022 World Cup, back in December 2010.”

    Of course they declare innocence, the payments were made AFTER they won, so the bidding process was over. Everyone knew from the get-go that Qatar paid for the WC. FIFA executives had a choice, take the money for themselves at the time or make more money for FIFA in 2022 when the US provides you with the greatest revenue generating WC of all time. They decided to line their own pockets at that moment.

  8. Brain Guy says:

    Jack Warner accepted bribes in connection with the Qatar WC bid.

    In other news, the sun rose this morning, water is wet, and Lionel Messi is a good soccer player.

  9. iggy says:

    With the increasing strength of club football over international (especially in the EU) I wonder if Qatar could prove a tipping point with more fans turned off to international football by this, damaging the world cup forever.

    Scandals and cheating are hard to recover from, just ask MLB.

    • Nate Dollars says:

      i don’t really follow baseball, but if you’re talking about doping or insider gambling, those can directly affect the integrity of the games. i don’t think most anybody will really care about bribes for the qatar (or any) world cup, as long as the games are good.

    • slowleftarm says:

      MLB is making an insane amount of money and attendance is super high. Some purists may have their noses out of joint and the BBWAA is doing their best to ensure the HOF is some sort of shrine rather than a museum cataloging the history of the sport, but most people are too concerned about any “scandals.”

      • Don the Jewler says:

        Was watching some baseball Spring training games yesterday. Games were covered on MLB, ESPN as well as MASN. The stadiums were packed. MLB is doing just dandy.

    • MLS_Soccer_Talker says:

      Doubt it

    • Danny says:

      This nothing new. Allegations about corruption have always followed WC voting. Usually by countries that lost the bidding. (US and England) Just like the olimpics. People have come to expect some level of curruption from such organizations.
      Nothing can replace the World Cup.

  10. AcidBurn says:

    So nobody is outraged that the head of CONCACAF doesn’t vote for a CONCACAF nation in the World Cup bidding?

    This pretty much seals what everyone suspected, Warner voted for Qatar. Disgraceful.

    • wood chip zip says:

      And in retaliation Blazer sacrificed himself to bring Warner down

    • John says:

      errr are you sure he voted for Qatar?

      I’m pretty sure I remember reading that he did in fact vote for the US.

      • kar says:

        Pretty sure FIFA WC votes are secret — Warner can say whatever he wanted about his vote, no one really knows who voted.

        Tangentially, I think one of the anti-corruption recommendations (unimplemented, of course) was to remove that secrecy.

        Didn’t bother to fact check my post (this is the internet after all), but those are my recollections…

  11. Expat4455 says:

    All of Europe are, and always have been, totally against the cup in Qatar. The temperature reaches 120-130 during June. And even if they build cooled stadiums what do the fans do the rest of their time? Stay in their hotel rooms? The world cup is a world culture event as much as it is a sports event. All visitors enjoy meeting and interacting with fans from other countries and having a big party.

    For instance, at the wc in 2006 there were many fans from other countries, especially Tunisia, who came for weeks that didn’t have tickets to any matches. They just wanted to be a part of the festival.

    There was a huge outcry from the outset. To the point that is was eve considered to play the world cup in January. I believe there is a very good chance that the cup will be moved from Qatar.

    • away goals says:

      Yo expat you read the news on your boy green? He’ll be flying to arizona to train with the usmnt in the leadup to the mexico friendly.

      And since it’s not a fifa date, we can be sure he definitely got express permission from bayern this time.

  12. 407 says:

    Not a United supporter or fan, merely an admirer from a distance: how is it Moyes doesn’t get at least the same level of deference as Rogers got at Liverpool a few short seasons ago? Both clubs had had successful periods before falling off. Can’t it be said that MU is now where LFC was two or three years ago?

    Admittedly, MU won the league as recently as last year, whereas Liverpool had been drifting a bit longer. But both clubs won nothing less than CL in the past several years, and Liverpool twice.

    So doesn’t Moyes rate at least a couple of seasons to do some rebuilding? He’s trying to steer a ship that was on the same course for 27 years. It seems reasonable that that change doesn’t happen quickly.

    • haydenjo says:

      Rogers came after the Liverpool quality of play had dropped.
      Manu won the league by 11 points last year; So I think this is a different situation

      • 407 says:

        Agreed, different situations. But it seems like just enough similarity, though, such that it’d be too soon to get rid of Moyes already. And for what, so someone else can now start over again, and a club of MU’s stature will have had three coaches in barely ten months.

  13. JoeW says:

    Corruption in FIFA? I’m shocked! Shocked! Go round up the usual suspects!

  14. ManicMessiah says:

    David Moyes will stay or go based on what Manchester United is hearing from sponsors, not that it’s an original thought. Missing the Champions League, I think they planned on that possibility whenever Ferguson decided to retire, but this Man United team already lacks the gravitas of its predecessors. They were always a team I’d go out of my way to watch if Newcastle wasn’t playing at the same time. I thought they struck a great balance between thrust and flair in terms of attack. Part of it is probably on the squad, but Moyes has a way he wants the team to play, and it seems to me it is even less compatible with the group of players he has than I thought it would be.

    I think he’s gone, short of overtaking Spurs for 5th, or making it another few rounds in the Champions League.

    • slowleftarm says:

      I think the bigger problem is the players he has, and those he has bought, just aren’t good enough. How many of Man U’s defenders or midfielders are really good enough to play in a title winning team? Not many, if any. They almost need a whole new team and I’m not sure the funds needed for that are going to be available.

  15. Brett says:

    Hey Ives, any chance you start crediting your commenters as editors? Seems like every post has errors which your readers point out only to see the errors corrected and comments deleted.

    • Brett says:

      Don’t get me wrong, I like that Dan changed “flames of fire” to something less redundant, but he might also be aware that flames don’t fan things; one (a person, usually) “fans the flames” in order to spread the heat/fire.

  16. Brad C says:

    Did all the Man U fans and owners actually watch the Liverpool game? The Man U players could barely pass the ball to each other, much less put up any real fight.

    Sir Alex left the team in shambles. You can’t blame Moyes for that.