Beckenbauer admits 2006 mistake

Agence France-Presse . Berlin
This file picture taken on March 6, 2006 shows the president of the 2006 World Cup organising committee, Franz Beckenbauer, during a meeting at the Hilton Hotel in Dusseldorf. — AFP photo

This file picture taken on March 6, 2006 shows the president of the 2006 World Cup organising committee, Franz Beckenbauer, during a meeting at the Hilton Hotel in Dusseldorf. — AFP photo

German football legend Franz Beckenbauer admitted making a ‘mistake’ in the bidding process to host the 2006 World Cup but on Monday denied that votes were bought.
Beckenbauer was the head not only of the World Cup organising committee but also Germany’s bid. Ten days ago, German magazine Der Spiegel accused the German bid team of buying votes.
The 70-year-old said the bid committee accepted a proposition that ‘should have been rejected’ and said he took ‘full responsibility for this mistake’, although he added in a written statement that ‘no votes were bought’.
This was the first time the former Germany international and coach had acknowledged any error was committed.
‘In order to obtain a FIFA grant, we accepted a proposition coming from FIFA’s finance commission that the implicated parties should, in retrospect, have refused,’ said the ‘Kaiser’.
‘As president of the organising committee at that time, I take responsibility for this mistake.’
However, Beckenbauer added that ‘no votes were bought to earn the right to organise the 2006 football World Cup.’
Der Spiegel had claimed that the votes of four Asian members of FIFA’s executive committee had been bought as Germany beat South Africa by 12 votes to 11, with one abstention, in 2000 to win the right to host the 2006 global showpiece.
None of those four, one of whom is now dead, have commented on Der Spiegel’s claims while the German Football Federation (DFB) strongly denied any impropriety.
Beckenbauer said he was interviewed by the investigation committee on Monday in Munich.
FIFA has also launched its own cash-for-votes investigation into the 2006 World Cup.
The DFB acknowledge that a 6.7 million euro payment was made to FIFA in April 2005 by the World Cup organising committee but denied Der Spiegel claims.
Der Spiegel said the loan was a slush fund used to buy votes.
Former DFB president Theo Zwanziger has backed der Spiegel’s assertion there was a slush fund and claimed that Niersbach knew about it in 2005. Der Spiegel said Beckenbauer was also in the loop.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Advertisement