11 Jun 2015

Zico wants to score FIFA presidency

12:36 pm on 11 June 2015

The former Brazil star Zico says he will stand in the election to succeed Sepp Blatter as president of FIFA, although he admits he may struggle to find enough support.

Blatter has already announced he will stand down from the job after the organisation he has headed since 1998 was engulfed in a series of corruption allegations.

Zico, who has experience of the game at managerial level having notably coached Japan, said he believed the game had to undergo wide-ranging reforms.

"I feel I am capable. For sure, certain rules need to change."

Zico is his playing hey day.

Zico in his playing prime for Brazil. Photo: Supplied

But he added he believed it was right that Blatter be allowed to stay in place prior to a vote on a successor due by year's end.

"This will allow him to make an orderly handover," Zico told reporters in Rio.

Zico, nicknamed the "white Pele" during a playing career which never yielded a World Cup triumph, joked that controversial Argentine legend Diego Maradona could serve as vice-president.

Maradona, a World Cup winner in 1986, was banned for doping eight years later and a previous drugs ban while playing in Italy would suggest he has little chance of joining the game's establishment.

While underlining his interest in standing for a revamped FIFA, Zico said he would first insist on a simplified voting system which is less open to "horsetrading."

And he added he would also call for a system of "one re-election at most," noting that Blatter and predecessor, Brazilian Joao Havelange, had held the post between them for the past four decades -- his own entire career as player and coach.

In order to have his FIFA candidature accepted Zico requires the support of five international federations.