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Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Ex-UEFA chief Platini scandal: Was there foul play in FIFA 2022 bid?

Michel Platini questioned as part of probe into awarding 2022 World Cup to Qatar

Anadolu |

Former UEFA President Michel Platini was released from custody Wednesday outside Paris after being questioned in an investigation regarding the awarding of the 2022 World Cup to Qatar.

Platini was released without charge just after his arrest Tuesday.

Platini rejected wrongdoings as leader of Europe’s football’s governing body, UEFA

Qatar was announced in December 2010 as host of football’s biggest event in 2022.

Platini rejected wrongdoings as leader of Europe’s football’s governing body, UEFA, when questioned at a police station in Nanterre.

Platini’s lawyer, William Bourdon, said it was “a lot of fuss over nothing” against the former UEFA chief.

“It was long but considering the number of questions, it could only be long, since I was asked about Euro 2016, the World Cup in Russia, the World Cup in Qatar, FIFA,” Platini told reporters after his release.

Platini’s investigation

Investigators are trying to determine if any corruption occurred while Platini was at the helm of UEFA, including the Euro 2016 tournament.

France was named in May 2010 as host nation of the Euro 2016, a quadrennial football championship in Europe held by UEFA.

France eliminated Turkey in the final stage of bidding with Platini announcing the results live.

Seven UEFA board members voted for France and Turkey had the remaining six votes – narrowly missing its chance to host its first ever Euro football competition.

Platini, who is a French football legend, served as UEFA president from 2007 to 2015 when he was banned by the FIFA Ethic Committee in a corruption investigation tied to awarding the 2022 World Cup.

Read more: FIFA to ditch expansion plans; Qatar to host 32 teams for World Cup 2022

Officials are also looking into corruption claims connected to the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

In 2014, FIFA’s Ethic Committee backed Russia and Qatar’s bids to host the World Cup.

Those bids have been dogged by allegations of widespread corruption and bribery but the committee contends they were fully ethical and could go ahead.

Anadolu with additional input by GVS News Desk