Sepp Blatter urged to stick to plans of stepping down from FIFA

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Sepp Blatter has been urged to follow through with his decision to step down from the Fifa presidency by FIFA election monitor Domenico Scala .

Blatter was told to end speculation that he wants to stay in office.

“The times of flirting with the power are definitely gone,” Scala said in a statement at the end of a week in which Blatter’s toying with the word “resign” suggested the president of world football’s governing body planned to hang on despite a growing corruption crisis.

“I call on all concerned — including Mr. Blatter — to endorse in the interest of the reforms unequivocally the announced changing of the guard at the top of Fifa,” Scala said.

Blatter announced his planned exit on June 2 amid a crisis provoked by American and Swiss federal investigations of alleged bribery, racketeering and money laundering, implicating senior FIFA officials.

Three weeks ago, the newly re-elected FIFA leader insisted he would not be a candidate in a fresh ballot to be held between December and March.

For his part, Blatter said his decision to leave Fifa was “liberating” and he expects the election to replace him will be in early 2016.

“I want to hand over Fifa in good condition,” he stated.

That is likely to be in 2016, he suggested, at a special election congress of Fifa’s 209 member federations in Zurich. Blatter said the realistic date was the beginning of next year, to prepare a four-month election campaign required by Fifa rules and avoid a clash with the Club World Cup. That tournament in Japan is scheduled to take place from 10-20 December.