If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter.

- George Washington

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

BBC does something useful shocker

I was delighted to read that the BBC's Panorama programme on Monday has upset a few footballers. It would seem that the programme alleged that some of the FIFA officials, including the FIFA Vice-President (above) have taken bribes in the past to influence their decisions over World Cup hosting rights.

Apparently, FIFA are about to announce their decision any day now about which country will host the 2018 Word Cup. And I am led to believe that England is a front runner. So naturally the English football establishment is delighted that the BBC is doing its best to ensure that all such decisions are taken openly and fairly, without the nasty smell of corruption to ruin the image of the 'beautiful game'.

Or not. I have seen several men on the television news being very cross (in fact one gentleman with distinctly ginger tendencies seemed rather angry) because apparently this may spoil England's chances of victory.


For one thing, it means that the whole of 2018 (and 2017, and 2016 ...) won't be quite so full of wall-to-wall football if England's campaign is fought on a distant shore. And of course, our inevitable ejection in the early rounds won't be quite such a national disaster.

And for another, it means that some other poor buggers will be standing the ever-inflating cost of hosting such an event. It has been calculated that hosting the World Cup will cost England about £1bn. Remember how the revealed cost of the 2012 Olympics quadrupled as soon as the bid was safely in the bag?

If we lose the bid, it will have been a lucky escape.

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