The fallout from the unsuccessful English bid to host the 2018 FIFA World Cup continues.

Various reasons are given – the critical stance of the English media, the crises which saw the departure of FA Chairman Lord David Triesman and the failure of some FIFA Executive Committee members to honour supposed promises to vote for England – and others reasons as well.

England is a big player in the world of football. It won the World Cup in 1966 and the English Premier League is the most commercially successful league in the world. Its matches are shown all over the world and in continents such as Asia there is almost blanket wall to wall coverage of the matches.

Commercial success however does not guarantee influence at the top table in FIFA.

England must realise that the next chairman of the Football Association must not only have credibility in England but also be able to move effortlessly through the corridors of power in UEFA and FIFA.

Lord Triesman was not such a person. He was a strong figure nationally with impeccable political credentials but he was unknown internationally.

Neither would have been Roger Burden who withdrew his application to become Chairman of the FA, having been the Acting Chairman, after his experience at the voting in Zurich. He is widely respected in the FA but lacks the international recognition which is required if England is to develop and consolidate influence in international football.

The blunt fact is that administrators who have given a lifetime of service to the game and who have risen to chair and serve on FA committees, are not usually suitable representatives of the FA at the top level.

That is why men like David Dein, Richard Scudamore and Rick Parry must be the front men in a new English approach to the international football bodies.

England must reassess its situation. It must support and promote its top people who are recognised and respected by other countries to fill positions at UEFA and FIFA.

  • Share/Bookmark