Champagne to stand for FIFA presidency

Jerome Champagne, the French former diplomat who was once FIFA president Sepp Blatter's right-hand man, is expected to announce on Monday that he is to stand for the presidency of football's world governing body.

deputy secretary general Jerome Champagne looks

Champagne has called a news conference for Monday in London, where he is expected to confirm he will be a candidate for the election in 2015, where he could run against Blatter who has said he will make a decision before mid-June on whether to stand for a fifth term.

Champagne, 55, spent 11 years working for FIFA, including three as deputy secretary general, after being part of the organising committee for the 1998 World Cup in his native France.

He was at one time extremely close to Blatter and helped run his campaign during the bitter 2002 election victory over African football leader Issa Hayatou.

After being overlooked for the position as secretary general, he became director of international relations and left the governing body in 2010.

Last year he published a 20,000 word document on his vision for the future of FIFA, including setting up a new management board and bringing in new measures to prevent conflicts of interest.

UEFA president Michel Platini, another possible candidate, has said he will not decide until after the World Cup.

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