BRIDGETOWN, Barbados – A British newspaper, the Independent, today launched a caustic attack on FIFA’s high-ranking Trinidadian executive member Jack Warner after football's world governing body rejected England's bid to host the 2018 World Cup.
Sam Wallace, the newspaper’s football correspondent, accused Warner of promising England the all-important three CONCACAF votes and then failing to deliver during the secret ballot in Zurich.
Warner, a government minister in Trinidad and Tobago, is a powerful FIFA vice-president and is president of CONCACAF, the continental governing body for the North, Central America and Caribbean region.
His vote was one of 22 on the executive committee which helped hand Russia the 2018 showpiece and surprisingly award oil-rich Qatar the 2022 event.
In recent weeks, Warner had been courted by England Prime Minister David Cameron; Prince William, the second in line to the British throne and superstar David Beckham, the most recognisable football face in the country.
However, England embarrassingly bowed out in the first round of voting on Thursday securing just two votes, one of which is believed to be the country’s bid chairman Geoff Thompson.
Wallace contended that England’s bid committee should have been wary of engaging Warner especially “given his implication in a 2006 World Cup ticket scandal over which even FIFA was moved to sanction him.”