FIFA President Sepp Blatter (Eventually) Quitting Amid Corruption Probe

blatterLast Friday, Sepp Blatter was reelected as president of FIFA, the world’s most powerful soccer organization, only days after several high-ranking FIFA officials were arrested on charges of receiving illegal bribes and kickbacks. Today, after nearly two decades as head of the group behind the World Cup, Blatter announced he will be stepping down.

“While I have a mandate from the membership of FIFA, I do not feel that I have a mandate from the entire world of football – the fans, the players, the clubs, the people who live, breathe and love football as much as we all do at FIFA,” explained Blatter. “Therefore, I have decided to lay down my mandate at an extraordinary elective Congress. I will continue to exercise my functions as FIFA President until that election.”

Since the next scheduled FIFA Congress won’t take place until next May, the group’s Executive Committee will need to arrange a special meeting to elect the next president. For some reason, that can’t happen until at least December, reports Bloomberg.

The Blatter resignation comes on the heels of a news report that FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke, the second-most powerful official in the organization, allegedly authorized a $10 million payment from FIFA to bank accounts overseen by Jack Warner, a former head of CONCACAF, FIFA’s governing body for North America, Central America, and the Caribbean. Warner was among those arrested last week.

FIFA claims that no one at the group’s top level, including Valcke, was involved in the “initiation, approval and implementation” of the 2008 payment to Warner.

The news also comes only two days after John Oliver called on FIFA’s biggest sponsors to use their leverage to oust Blatter, by promising to use their products (and he pretends he likes them) if they helped.

“I will even drink a Bud Light Lime,” he pleaded to Budweiser, “despite the fact that all the lime in the world can not disguise the fact that this tastes like a puddle beneath a Long John Silver’s dumpster… If you get rid of the Swiss demon that has ruined the sport I love, this will taste like f*cking champagne.”

While he’s not yet drinking Bud Light Lime, he’s at least living up to the “champagne” part of the promise:

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