Sepp Blatter last night pulled out of the Champions' League final as pressure grew on Fifa to call off the presidential election because of the bribery scandal.
Blatter was due at a reception at Wembley given by Uefa's president, Michel Platini, but sent his apologies to prepare his case after becoming embroiled in the worst crisis in Fifa's 107-year history.
Blatter must appear before Fifa's ethics committee today along with his rival for the presidency Mohamed bin Hammam – and Fifa vice-president Jack Warner – following allegations of illicit payments made to Caribbean federations. Wednesday's election seems certain to be called off if Blatter is suspended.
Sources have told The Independent on Sunday that any suggestion Blatter had prior knowledge of the bribes-for-votes scandal is wide of the mark. The case against Bin Hammam and Warner is said to be more compelling. As he left for Zurich last night, Warner said he had nothing to fear and warned he would bring down others with him if thrown out.
"In the next couple of days you will see a football tsunami that will hit Fifa and the world that will shock you," said Warner. "The time has come when I must stop playing dead so you'll see it, it's coming, trust me."