Michel Platini is today being detained by authorities over his involvement in Qatar’s winning bid to host the World Cup in 2020 bonusbets.com reports today.
According to his team, he is being held for ‘technical reasons’ over his involvement with the bid by Qatar to host the world cup in 2020. He was already serving a ban from football along with Sepp Blatter amid talks of corruption into the winning bid that was placed by Qatar.
He was taken into custody by the anti-corruption office of the judicial police, though his team insists he has not been arrested, but rather has been approached as a witness. The police have also questioned former FIFA President Sepp Blatter over the bids for both 2018 and 2020.
Also according to the French news site Mediapart, the former general secretary of the Elysee, Claude Gueant, has been taken in for questioning, but again hasn’t been arrested as of yet. FIFA responded to the news of Platini being detained, saying it was concerning to know, they added their “full commitment to cooperating with the authorities in any given country of the world where investigations are taking place in connection with football activities”
Platini’s team said that he was cooperating fully with the authorities and that he was providing useful answers to their questions. They also claimed that the former footballer has “absolutely nothing to reproach himself with” the investigation follows Qatar controversially winning the rights to host the world cup in 2020 over ten years. A decision which has been met with a lot of concern from many different elements in the football community. Russia hosted the world cup in 2018, and this was also felt to be a little controversial.
The investigation has alleged that there was private corruption, influence peddling, criminal association, and benefitting from influence peddling. Platini served as president of FIFA between 2007 and 2015 and was found guilty of having received a “disloyal payment” from Sepp Blatter. For this, he received a four-year ban from being involved in football. A ban which he is still currently serving. The ban was originally for a total of eight years, but so far it has been reduced twice.
Platini’s decision to vote for Qatar as hosts in 2020 has been met with suspicion for a number of years and on a number of occasions. Blatter who, at the time of the vote, was president of FIFA, stated that Platini had backed out of an agreement to support a bid by the US to host the 2020 world cup.
Platini states that he might have told the US that he would support their bid, but it is alleged that he changed his mind following a visit with the crown prince of Qatar that convinced him to support them instead. The influence is said to have been put on him directly by the then president of France, Nicolas Sarkozy. Blatter claims that Platini told him that the president had convinced him to change his mind.