MOSCOW, November 17 (Sputnik) – Former English Football Association (FA) chairman David Bernstein has asked European nations to boycott the 2018 World Cup in Russia, the BBC reports.
The former FA chairman urged European nations to boycott the next World Cup, unless FIFA implements “drastic” measures to change the organization’s current regime.
The tournament could not be taken seriously without major European nations boycotting it, the BBC said.
“England on its own cannot influence this – one country can’t do it,” Bernstein said, as quoted by the Daily Mail. “It sounds drastic, but frankly this has gone on for years now, it’s not improving, it’s going from bad to worse to worse. There are 54 countries within UEFA [European Football Association]. There’s Germany, Spain, Italy, France and Holland – all powerful. You can’t hold a serious World Cup without them. They have the power to influence if they have the will.”
Bernstein criticized FIFA being “totalitarian” which reminded him of “the old Soviet Empire”. He further added that the organization’s credibility is “suffering enormously” under the current regime and FIFA’s choice to hold the 2022 World Cup in Qatar was “one of the most ludicrous decisions in the history of sport”, according to the BBC.
England was one of the bidding nations to host the 2018 FIFA World Cup; however, their campaign was not successful and England missed out on the opportunity. Instead, FIFA Executive Committee selected Russia to host the World Cup in 2018 and Qatar in 2022.