Gill's impending seat at European football's top table is just the start as he could emerge as FIFA candidate in 2015
The path is clear for Manchester United’s David Gill to become English football’s most influential global powerbroker over the next three years.
Gill is a certainty to be elected on to UEFA’s executive committee at Thursday’s Congress vote, having spent this week — with the help of his FA campaign team, who surely can’t lose this bid — ensuring he has had face-to-face dialogue with all 53 voting European federations.
And once the respected Gill, who had already met 46 associations in six months of electioneering, gets his feet under the UEFA table, he should emerge in 2015 as the most suitable choice to replace Northern Ireland’s Jim Boyce as the British vice-president on the FIFA executive.
There is no way UEFA will continue to accept the archaic tradition of the four Home Nations choosing the vulnerable British FIFA seat themselves on a rotation system.
UEFA want a big say in future selections and Gill ticks all the boxes, including having the backing of Boyce.
Gill’s candidacy had met with opposition at the start with concern that he would be more interested in Manchester United’s cause than UEFA’s. But his decision to stand down as United chief executive made all the difference and he is expected to get more than 40 votes.
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He pointed to their average 36 per cent of turnover spent on wages, average ticket prices of 23 euros, and 60 per cent of German players in the top league in which 14 out of 18 clubs return a profit — all figures that contrast with the excesses of the Premier League.
But Seifert, who described himself as the ‘German Richard Scudamore’, was careful not to directly criticise the PL, which he called a ‘perfect marketing product’.
Liverpool will not like his view that they will never win the Premier League because other English clubs have much more financial muscle.
Seifert also voiced Germany’s disapproval of a summer World Cup in Qatar in 2022.
‘I am absolutely convinced that it is hard if not impossible to play in 48-degree heat,’ he said.
Seifert added that other major leagues were ‘very upset’ at the prospect of the winter switch and fixture scheduling meaning a ‘four-week tournament affecting three years of running professional football in Europe’.
If that happens Seifert believes there will be multiple legal actions.
The Premier League, who see the Qatar mess as FIFA’s problem, remain strongly opposed to a winter World Cup disrupting their club season.
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