The battle of the governing bodies
FIFA has taken another kicking over its policy on racism, and this time it was their pals at UEFA taking a swipe at Sepp Blatter and co. The European governing body has revealed that the paltry fines handed out for racism at international matches would be considerably higher if they fell under its jurisdiction.
Spokesman William Gaillard was forced to answer accusations of double standards after Atletico Madrid were fined a record €150,000 for racist abuse of black players and journalists by their fans during a match against Marseille. The fine is considerably higher than the £15,000 one handed out by FIFA to the Croatian FA last months for their fans racially abusing Emile Heskey when England played them in a World Cup qualifier.
Gaillard said: “That was a Fifa fine, not a Uefa fine. We have no direct influence on Fifa decisions at all. But if we had been in charge, the punishment would have been a lot heavier.”
Oo er! Gaillard’s remark follows criticism by Rio Ferdinand of FIFA’s enforcement of its racism policies.