Blatter the missing man at World Cup

Sepp Blatter’s attendance at the Women’s World Cup final in Canada next week appears to be in jeopardy due to the twin investigations into Fifa by American and Swiss justice authorities.

Blatter the missing man at World Cup

Blatter would normally attend the final and hand over the trophy to the captain of the winning team, but Fifa will not confirm whether he or secretary general Jerome Valcke will attend.

A Fifa spokesperson said: “In terms of the Fifa president and the Fifa secretary general, their future travel plans will be confirmed in due course.”

Reports in the United States have said Blatter and Valcke are among those under investigation by the FBI, which has so far indicted 18 people on football-related corruption charges.

A source close to Fifa said the crisis is having a bearing over whether Blatter travels to Canada. The Swiss attorney general is also investigating the bidding process for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups. Neither the president nor secretary general have been charged with any wrongdoing and the US has not requested Blatter’s or Valcke’s extradition. Should that change, as a Swiss national Blatter is protected from extradition from Switzerland by Article 7 of IMAC, the governing Swiss law.

Russian sports minister Vitaly Mutko has said Blatter will attend the 2018 World Cup qualifying draw in St Petersburg on July 25.

“Of course, he will attend the draw,” Mutko said on Tuesday. “The whole of the Fifa executive committee will be there, as well as all 209 national federations. Preparations are going as planned.”

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