I was pleased to read of the opinions of the President of the Football Association of Wales, Phil Pritchard in today's Wales on Sunday. I know Phil. He lives just down the road from me - in Welshpool. We sometimes have a coffee and chat about things. I've not seen him since the Wales supported the uncontested election of Sepp Blatter to continue as FIFA President, in what was widely seen as a farce. Football has become such big international business that it was just not reasonable for the FAW to say nothing. So the interview was a bit of a coup for the WoS.
Seems to me that more than anything else it was a big poke in the eye for the English FA. I quite approve of that. Now I had been ready to criticise the Wales FA stance, but now I'm not so sure. I think I have rather more sympathy with Phil's view. Yes, Blatter has become a comic figure. Yes, his continued presence at the pinnacle of world football brings the game into ridicule. But reading Phil's comments makes it clear that England's representatives treated the other home countries with casual arrogance, simply assuming they would fall into line behind them with minimal discussion. If England had not been quite so full of themselves they might have received a bit more support. Maybe Wales will vote for someone else when Sepp Blatter reaches his mid 90s, and FIFA meetings have to be held in his nursing home - assuming there is an alternative candidate who has not been barred from standing because of corruption charges. Until then, the activities of FIFA will carry on being a carry on. After all, football is in the entertaining business.