Gianni Infantino Hopes Facts Will Come to Light in Criminal Investigation; Mumbai City FC Part Ways with Paulo Machado and More (Football Round-Up)
Gianni Infantino, in a letter, wrote that the investigation against him has "caused considerable damage to FIFA as an organisation and to myself as its president".
FIFA president Gianni Infantino says "facts will emerge" regarding the anonymous complaints that made against him leading to a criminal investigation by prosecutors in Switzerland. Last week, prosecutors opened criminal proceedings against Infantino over an alleged secret meeting he had with Swiss attorney general Michael Lauber.
In a letter to the FIFA’s member associations, Infantino said meetings that happened were "in no way secret and most certainly not illegal". However, the 50-year-old Swiss said that the investigation has "caused considerable damage to FIFA as an organisation and to myself as its president".
In his letter, Infantino writes: "Some anonymous complaints were filed against me in the canton of Bern. Not knowing the content of those anonymous complaints, we can only speculate as to why they were filed and who is behind them. Hopefully, the facts will emerge one day."
Infantino says the meetings with Lauber took place to discuss the fact that the attorney general's office was in the process of investigating a few criminal allegations that were painting FIFA in the wrong light.
Mumbai Part Ways with Machado
Mumbai City FC confirmed that the club and Portuguese midfielder Paulo Machado have parted ways by mutual consent.
The 34-year old became a part of the club in August 2018 and co-captained Mumbai with Amrinder Singh during his time at the club.
He was a part of every Indian Super League (ISL) game in his first season and was an influential player for Mumbai City in midfield, helping the club get its qualification to the playoffs.
Machado’s second year at the club was short-lived, He suffered a season-ending injury in December last year and he made only 9 appearances.
”Paulo has been a true model professional in these past two years. His influence on the club has been immense, both on and off the pitch and we are thankful for his contributions to the club,” Bimal Parekh, co-owner of Mumbai City FC said.
Covid-19 Crisis in Bangladesh
11 players of the Bangladesh national team tested positive for Covid-19, with seven players in line to get tested again by the Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF).
Bangladesh were preparing to be a part of the World Cup qualifiers preparatory camp on August 7 in Ghazipur but that is at risk now with so many players having tested positive.
Bangladesh hope to restart their World Cup and Asian Cup Qualifying campaign with ties against Afghanistan on October 8 in Sylhet. India will play Bangladesh on November 12.
The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) is also open to holding matches at centralised venues in each of the groups since the Covid-19 situation is very different for each country.
All the players came to camp after a prerequisite test for which the results were negative.
"They are puzzled after getting today's reports as they came with negative Covid-19 reports done from their respective areas," team manager Satyajit Das Rupu said.
All the affected players have been asked to travel back and go into a week’s isolation, after which, they will be tested again.
Van Persie Feyenoord Coach
Former Arsenal and Manchester United striker, Robin van Persie has returned home as coach at childhood club Feyenoord.
Persie, started and finished his career with his boyhood club and was overcome at the opportunity. "It is not an official position so it's hard for me to give it a title," the Dutch striker said. "It's a win-win. I'll find out here whether I like doing this and help the staff a bit."
Since his retirement, Persie had been working as an analyst in England.
The 37-year old Dutchman will work under manager Dick Advocaat and former teammates including Feyenoord captain Steven Berghuis. The former Netherland international spent two spells as a player at Feyenoord and has been capped 102 times for his country.
Bundesliga Gets Shorter Winter Break
The next Bundesliga season has been scheduled to start on September 18. Champions Bayern Munich will play Schalke 04 in the opener. The league has announced that a winter break of 11 days will be applied for the season, reduced because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The German Football League also announced that the opener will be rescheduled for September 21 if Bayern make it to the final of the Champions League (to be played on August 24).
Borussia Dortmund will begin their season against Borussia Monchengladbach. The winter breaks will be shorter than usual and the season will be concluded by December 21 and will resume on January 2.
The DFL is trying to figure out a concept that allows a limited number of spectators in the stadium once the season begins. The German government has banned fans from all major events until October 31.
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