The seven candidates to become the new president of FIFA have been confirmed by world soccer’s governing body.
Prince Ali bin al-Hussein, Musa Bility, Jerome Champagne, Gianni Infantino, Michel Platini, Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim al-Khalifa and Tokyo Sexwale have all been ratified and will be able to stand in the election on Feb. 26, 2016 at the FIFA congress to decided who will take over from outgoing president Sepp Blatter.
[ ANALYSIS: Who will be next FIFA president? ]
One man has missed out, as former Trinidad and Tobago midfielder David Nakhid was not included on the list despite saying he had the five required nominations from soccer federations. Nakhid was on a flight from Denmark to Trinidad on Wednesday when the news broke and is expected to appeal the decision. It is likely that a federation who previously said they would back him has instead backed another candidate.
Another, Michel Platini, may not even get the chance to stand as a presidential candidate as he’s currently suspended by FIFA for 90-days as they look into a payment of $1.9 million between the current UEFA president and Blatter. If Platini is cleared of any wrongdoing by FIFA, then their own independent Ethics Committee will look into his backgrounds, and those of the other six candidates, before the Ad-Hoc Electoral Committee has the final decision on which individuals can stand in the election to replace Blatter.
Blatter, 79, will step down next year after 17 years in charge of FIFA as the embattled organization is riddled by corruption allegations as both the U.S. and Swiss authorities are currently investigating widespread claims of bribery and racketeering inside FIFA.
On Wednesday Blatter launched an incredible tirade against two of the candidates, his close friend Platini and UEFA’s representative Infantino, as the outgoing president also revealed that a deal was already in place for the 2018 World Cup to be hosted in Russia before the vote was made.