FIFA Scandal British MP calls for FA chairman to explain Platini support

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FA Chairman Greg Dyke before the match Mandatory Credit: Action Images / John Sibley Livepic play FA Chairman Greg Dyke before the match Mandatory Credit: Action Images / John Sibley Livepic (Reuters)
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English FA chairman Greg Dyke should explain his support for Michel Platini's FIFA presidential bid following the latest twist in the crisis engulfing world soccer's governing body, British MP Damian Collins said on Friday.

"I think many people want to know why the FA have nailed their colours to the mast backing Michel Platini before even the presidential nominations have closed," Collins told Sky Sports.

Collins said Dyke needed to explain the FA's support for the UEFA president, whom Swiss authorities said had received two million Swiss francs ($2.05 million) from FIFA president Sepp Blatter in 2011.

Blatter is under criminal investigation by Swiss authorities but remains in office ahead of a scheduled February election.

Platini is being questioned about the payment but has not been accused of any wrongdoing, although he admitted the development had damaged his chances of replacing Blatter as FIFA president.

In a statement issued to Reuters on Friday, the FA said Dyke had long ago agreed to speak to the Culture, Media and Sport (CMS) Select Committee, on which Collins sits, and was waiting for the committee to give him a date for the meeting.

"I'd like to know what Greg Dyke's view is of the current situation, this latest turn in the FIFA crisis," said Collins, one of the founders of the NewFIFANow reform group.

"There are a lot of outstanding questions Michel Platini and Sepp Blatter need to answer."

The CMS committee cannot influence the way the FA votes but Collins said it was a forum for the FA to explain publicly what they believed was happening at UEFA and FIFA.

"Greg Dyke sits at the FIFA Congress representing the FA and has relationships with senior people at UEFA.

"Why have they given Michel Platini their support? Is it unconditional and what would it take for that support to be withdrawn?

"Is the reason the FA are backing Michel Platini just to curry favour at UEFA rather than because they think he is the best candidate?"

The FA were quick to respond, telling Reuters: "Greg Dyke is more than happy to meet the committee and has had a standing invitation for some time.

"He is ready to meet them as soon as they set a date for the meeting. He has also said that if Platini is accused or found guilty of any wrongdoing, the FA's support would obviously be reviewed."

Swiss authorities have said they are treating Platini as somewhere "between a witness and an accused person".

Platini and Blatter deny wrongdoing over the affair, part of a broader scandal that began unfolding in May when 14 soccer officials and marketing executives were indicted in the United States for bribery, money laundering and wire fraud.

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