Blatter to pursue fifth term

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Fifa president Sepp Blatter has confirmed he will pursue a fifth term in office after the football controlling body voted against term and age limits for officials.

Blatter, 78, said: “I know that my mandate will finish next year on 29 May in Zurich. But my mission is not finished.

“And I tell you together we will build the new Fifa together. We have the foundations today because we have the budget for the next four years.

“We have the foundation, now we work. Congress, you will decide who takes this great institution forward.

“But I can tell you I am ready to accompany you in the future.”

Blatter’s announcement comes in an eventful week for the Swiss, who is weathering criticism for branding fresh UK newspaper reports alleging corruption in the controversial awarding of the 2022 World Cup to Qatar as racist.

Jerome Champagne, who will contest the presidency next year, released a statement in response to Blatter’s bid for re-election.

“For the past years and in particular since I declared my candidacy on January 20, 2014 in London, I have been defending the need of a genuine, respectful and fair-play debate on all issues affecting Fifa and football in the 21st century.

“Moreover, in any democratic organisation, the election of its president is about vision, programmes and manifestos. No one should fear this open discussion in front of the people of football, which would honour those organising and conducting it.”

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