Fifa remove sanction threat on Poland

Click to follow
The Independent Football

World soccer's governing body Fifa has dropped its threat of sanctions against Euro 2012 co-hosts Poland after reaching an agreement with the country's government, Fifa president Sepp Blatter said today.

"We have received letters and documents that there has been an agreement between the FA and the Polish government," Blatter told reporters in Brussels.

"If this agreement comes into force tomorrow it is sufficient for us. We will not impose any sanctions once the agreement comes into force."

Fifa last week warned the Polish government that it was facing the possible suspension of its national football team after it decided to replace the FA's leadership with a government-appointed administrator.

Fifa's European counterpart Uefa said today's development removed any "immediate threat" of Poland losing the right to co-host Euro 2012 with Ukraine but said it would be closely monitoring the Polish government's adherence to today's agreement.

"There is no immediate threat to their hosting of Euro 2012," William Gaillard, special adviser to Uefa president Michel Platini, told Reuters after the government agreed to end their administration of the Polish FA.

"However a lot of trust has been lost and we need to see if they stick to their side of the agreement this time around."

As well as removing the administrator, Fifa said the Polish government had agreed to return to a "roadmap" set up following a similar row in 2007.

Under the terms of the agreement, Fifa said that an independent electoral committee comprising government, Fifa and Uefa representatives, would oversee upcoming elections for the leadership of the Polish FA.

"This positive evolution will allow the two 2010 Fifa World Cup qualifying matches Poland v Czech Republic and Slovakia v Poland, scheduled for Oct 11 and 15, to take place," the statement said.

"However, Fifa will continue to closely monitor the situation at the Polish FA and the implementation of the measures established in the roadmap.

"The matter will be analysed and discussed once more at the next Fifa Executive Committee meeting on 23-24 October."

The Polish sports ministry confirmed the terms of the agreement and said it planned to hold a media briefing later on Monday.

The ministry also released a copy of a letter sent to the Polish FA by sports minister Miroslaw Drzewiecki describing Monday's agreement as "a breakthrough" against alleged corruption at the association.

"I am convinced the Fifa and Uefa approval for the plan will allow for an election of new (Polish FA) authorities in accordance with current regulations and will start a breakthrough in a fight against abuses troubling Polish soccer," Drzewiecki wrote in the letter.