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Platini 'absolutely confident about future', insists lawyer

Omnisport
NEWS
News
50   //    18 Jun 2019, 20:18 IST
platini-cropped
Former UEFA president Michel Platini

Michel Platini's lawyer insists the former UEFA president has "nothing to blame himself for" after he was detained by police during investigations into the decision to award the 2022 World Cup to Qatar.

William Bourdon, representing Platini, claimed in a statement that the 63-year-old was not under arrest after he was taken in for questioning by officers of the Anti-Corruption Office of the Judicial Police in Paris on Tuesday.

Platini was serving on FIFA's executive committee in 2010 when Qatar was awarded the rights to host the 2022 World Cup.

He was later banned from football for a period of four years after being found to have breached FIFA's code of ethics regarding conflict of interest and dereliction of duty relating to a "disloyal payment" from former FIFA president Sepp Blatter.

The statement, which revealed Platini was also asked by investigators about the bidding process for Euro 2016, said: "Michel Platini, after having been heard, in the same investigation in free hearing last year, is now being questioned under police custody only for technical reasons.

"His counsel, Mr. William Bourdon, strongly affirms that this is in no way an arrest, but a hearing as a witness in the context desired by investigators, a framework that prevents all persons heard, then confronted, cannot confer outside the procedure.

"Michel Platini spoke calmly and precisely, answered all questions, including those about the bidding process of the Euro 2016, and provided useful explanations.

"He has absolutely nothing to blame himself for and claims to be totally ignorant to facts that are beyond his control.

"He is absolutely confident about the future."

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Platini, who won the Ballon d'Or three times and represented Juventus and France during a glittering playing career, missed out on the opportunity to run for the presidency of FIFA due to his ongoing ban.

FIFA indicated that it would support the investigation into Qatar's successful World Cup bid, while declining to comment on the specifics of Platini's case.

World football's governing body said in a statement: "FIFA is aware of today's press reports concerning Mr. Michel Platini.

"Please understand that since we don't have all the details about the matter we are not in a position to comment further.

"Generally speaking, FIFA reiterates its full commitment to cooperating with the authorities in any given country of the world where investigations are taking place in connection with football activities."

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