Former French international Michel Platini was re-elected as the president of UEFA last week and unfortunately he ran unopposed. He will now be in charge of Europe’s governing body of soccer for a third term. Platini was obviously thrilled the nobody ran against him and told the media, “We’re transparent, we’re democratic and we’re the best. We have shown that it is indeed possible to combine romanticism and realism, ideals and action.”
There was some good news though as UEFA also announced that it won’t be backing Sepp Blatter when he runs for the presidency of FIFA for a fifth term on May 29. Blatter will finally be facing some opposition this time around in the likes of Michael van Praag, Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein and Luis Figo. Van Praag, the president of the Dutch FA laid into Blatter and FIFA by remarking, “The current state of disarray asks for a change in leadership. It is the responsibility of our generation to clean up the mess. The beautiful heritage of international football has been tarnished by ever continuing accusations of corruption, bribery, nepotism and waste of money.”
The 59-year-old Platini went on to tell the press that European football needs to stamp out racism and hooliganism before things get any worse. He feels if these problems aren’t stopped in their tracks then football may return to the dark days of the 1980s when violence ran rampant at many games. He remarked, “I therefore renew my call for greater awareness of this issue among the public authorities, so that we can avoid reliving the dark days of a not-so-distant past — a past where hooligans and all manner of fanatics called the shots in certain European stadiums.”
Platini was one of the best goalscorers of his generation as the attacking midfielder scored 41 goals in 71 games for France and added 312 more in 580 career club contests.