Alan Sugar interested in FA role

Lord Sugar would consider it a "great honour" to become the new chairman of the Football Association.

Lord Triesman stepped down from the role yesterday after he allegedly said the Spanish and Russian football federations were contemplating bribery.

FA board members David Sheepshanks and Roger Burden were drafted in as acting joint chairmen after Lord Triesman resigned, both from his role as FA chairman and a similar post with England's 2018 World Cup bid.

Former Tottenham chairman Lord Sugar would relish the opportunity to succeed Lord Triesman - and has big plans for change already in mind.

He told Sky Sports News: "The FA is a great organisation.

"It would be a great honour to try to assist but, of course, that's totally in the hands of whoever makes those decisions now. I should imagine the post would be advertised and I'd be quite interested - it would be quite a challenge.

"I've long thought there needs to be a reform in the constitution of the FA.

"Some of the rules go back a very long time - some very good rules but I don't think they have changed with the times. The rules create financial problems for the clubs.

"I think Lord Mawhinney did a very good job in his capacity as chairman of the Football League. He got things moving in the right direction. There is a need for some major, major changes in the constitution but that would take a long time and need a lot of people to sign up to it.

"I don't think the resistance would be as hard as you might imagine. The point is the constitution and the rules and regulations of being members needs to be looked at again. If that could be changed and there were more controls at the FA, it would make for a much more sensible organisation, thus allowing investment in grass-roots, perhaps taking the highlight away from the obvious top level of the game - the Premiership."

England's hopes of hosting the 2018 World Cup were thrown into turmoil by the allegations in a Sunday newspaper yesterday.

Geoff Thompson replaced Triesman as head of the bid team, while letters of apology were faxed to both Spanish and Russian associations in an attempt to minimise the damage caused.

Lord Sugar has urged the authorities to look past this "minor setback" when it comes to deciding where the showpiece event will be held in eight years' time.

"I don't know the details. It would be wrong for me to comment about the alleged comments that Lord Triesman made. They were clearly not helpful," he said.

"It's been invented in the media and if I was one of the opposing countries I would make as much play of it as I possibly could.

"One has to hope the authorities who make the final decision ignore this minor setback and look at the real criteria of what you have to look at in order to justify who gets the bid for 2018."

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