In a report from The Guardian, Prince Ali bin al-Hussein will run for FIFA President, adding his name to the list of contenders. The current list only has two official nominees with current UEFA President and FIFA Executive Committee member Michel Platini and FIFA VP Chung Mong-joon but more are expected to announce bids by the October 26 deadline. Prince Ali lost to Sepp Blatter in the last FIFA Presidential election earlier this year by a 130-73 vote.
Prince Ali has been critical of Platini for the past couple of months. He said that Platini was a “protege” of Sepp Blatter and after talking to Platini, Prince Ali said, “I think it’s responsible to guarantee the future is different from the past and therefore I was not very encouraged.” It’s notable to consider that Platini publicly supported Prince Ali in the FIFA election against Blatter.
It’s also interesting to note that Prince Ali has seemingly softened his stance on Russia and Qatar hosting the FIFA World Cup saying, “It would be lovely to have a World Cup in Russia and also in Qatar.” Prince Ali also supported revealing the Garcia Report that showcased corruption between 2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cup bids that was released in a summary, causing questions about a lack of transparency.
Whether or not Prince Ali had always supported the bids or he just recently changed his mind, it’s a little bit of a shock considering he is somewhat known as the most “clean” out of the candidates and he’s supporting bids from countries who have had various human rights violations as well as corruption in regards to getting the bids. Who knows, he may be saying this because he’s already playing the political game and trying not to “rock the boat” so he can get the votes to actually be elected or he actually does believe this, but it could potentially raise doubts from people if he will actually change FIFA. Although to be fair, he may still be the only hope people have at actually changing FIFA if he were to be elected President.