Dutch football association chairman challenges Sepp Blatter for Fifa top job

Michiel van PraagDutch football association chairman Michael van Praag has launched a campaign to be appointed president of football’s ruling body Fifa, in a direct challenge to Sepp Blatter.

Van Praag says he and the KNVB believe it is his responsibility to take the step.

‘Everyone knows that the KNVB is extremely worried about Fifa’s reputation and the way Fifa is organised and run,’ he said. ‘I had hoped that a reliable candidate would come forward. But that has not happened.’

‘And that is why we, partly as one of the founders of Fifa, have to accept our responsibilities, and I have to accept my responsibility by coming forward as a candidate.


Van Praag is an outspoken critic of Blatter, 78, who has chaired Fifa since 1998. On Tuesday, his official candidacy with the required five letters from associations who support him will be sent to Fifa headquarters in Zurich, a KNVB statement said.

The election will take place at Fifa’s Congress in May, with Blatter seeking a fifth term as president.

Van Praag is the fifth man to challenge Blatter. Jerome Champagne, Prince Ali Bin al Hussein, David Ginola and Mino Raiola have already come forward.

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