Sheikh Salman says Gianni Infantino strategy would bankrupt FIFA

Sheikh Salman Bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa raised the stakes within the FIFA presidential election on Tuesday by contending that rival Gianni Infantino’s program to significantly enhance money payouts to federations would bankrupt football’s troubled governing physique as it faces a $560 million deficit.

Although FIFA reported money reserves of $1.523 billion in 2014, far-reaching criminal investigations into football officials more than the final year have thwarted attempts to replace sponsors, and legal costs have escalated because the organisation tries to prevent being dragged down by the scandals.

FIFA isn’t scheduled to publish its 2015 economic report until next month, but Sheikh Salman — a member of its finance committee — revealed the anticipated losses for the 2015-18 Planet Cup cycle in an exclusive interview together with the Connected Press ahead of Friday’s election to succeed Sepp Blatter.

“The expected deficit for the next four years is 560 (million dollars) — that is going to become withdrawn in the reserves,” Salman, a Bahraini royal, told the AP. “If you might be a chair of a enterprise which is making losses and also you say you will distribute dividends to your shareholders, it doesn’t make sense.”

In his campaign program, Sheikh Salman has pledged to only distribute FIFA funds for specific football projects in countries most in have to have of assistance. But Infantino has committed to providing each and every of FIFA’s 209 members $5m to invest in development projects and operating expenses — an enormous enhance on the $2.05m per federation from 2011-14 — on top rated of other payouts.

“I think in three years we [FIFA] could be bankrupt — that is how it really is,” Salman said. “Every particular person can see this can’t come about. The numbers usually do not match at all.”

“It’s not as much as the elected president to make such a risky decision at the same time,” he added. “What kind of democracy and what sort of organisation need to be run by one man?”

If Infantino wins Friday’s five-man vote, Salman would attempt to block the UEFA basic secretary from distributing funds as planned.

“If I’m not elected as president I will still be a FIFA vice president and I’ll usually do what’s ideal for the organisation to maintain that assistance for other nations also,” Salman mentioned.

Salman, who is also Asian Football Confederation president, disclosed that he currently has new industrial backers lined up.

“I know several sponsors which might be prepared which are not signed a contract but who are prepared to sign as soon as I’m elected,” Salman said.