Michel Platini secures third term as UEFA president
Vienna, March 23 Michel Platini will be elected to a third term as UEFA president here on Tuesday unopposed as he is the only candidate for the top post in the European football governing body. The 59-year-old, who led France to the European Championship in 1984, was first elected as UEFA president in 2007 and remained in the position in 2011, reports Xinhua.
Platini decided not to challenge Sepp Blatter for the FIFA presidency in May. But he is backing the three candidates - Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein, FIFA vice-president from Jordan; Dutch football federation president Michael van Praag; and former Portugal international Luis Figo - battling to oust the 79-year-old veteran.
"FIFA needs new ideas, new programmes," Platini said.
In his eight years of ruling UEFA, Platini has reinforced the stature of the Champions League, now one of the world's most valuable sports brands. UEFA says the current tournament will bring in €1.34 billion ($1.45 billion).
He insists that clubs cannot spend more than they earn under UEFA's Financial Fair Play rules. Offenders face tough sanctions as Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain have already learnt.
The European Championship for countries is also being reformed. Euro 2020 will be played in 13 cities in 13 different countries.
A Nations League, which offers qualification for the European Championship finals, will from 2018 replace most of the friendlies played by European countries that get little attention.
But the Frenchman has faced criticism, particularly over the award of the 2022 World Cup to Qatar. Platini was one of the first to publicly reveal that he voted for Qatar at the controversial 2010 meeting.