In an attempt to stamp out the corruption thought to be rife throughout the organisation, former FIFA-qualified referees are to begin officiating at all meetings attended by FIFA delegates.
The new refereeing policy follows Panorama’s exclusive revelation last night that three senior FIFA officials took bribes in the 1990s, at a time when none of us did anything whatsoever that was a little bit dodgy.
A FIFA spokesperson said, “Referees will be brought in to keep a close eye on the proceedings, in the hope that the delegates will start to behave themselves.”
“Obviously the refs are only human, and might still miss the odd under-the-table incident. We will review the policy in six months to see if we need to implement pocket-line technology on every FIFA delegate.”
“What we can be absolutely sure of is better time keeping, and meetings will end pretty much when we expect, give or take a couple of minutes.”
FIFA officials bribed
Observers have suggested this is too little too late, and further evidence that football’s governing body is way behind the times.
Football correspondent David Williams told us, “I’m sure that if Nicolas Leoz, Issa Hayatou or Ricardo Teixeira had been given a yellow card for earlier indiscretions they might not have gone on to take the bribes that they did. That’s where a strong ref really comes into his own.”
“Moving forward this can only be a good thing for FIFA executive meetings. Would you really waste time on Any Other Business if you knew Graham Poll was behind you ready to bring out a yellow card with little or no provocation?”
“Biscuits will be shared equally and anyone forgetting to order coffee for the room will no doubt face the famous Pierluigi Collina stare.”
Critics have said the move will have little effect, with one explaining, “All this will do is make the bribery more professional. There will be no more amateur attempts with brown paper bags, but slick cash transfer routines which have been developed after hours on the training ground.”