27 Jun 2015

Blatter says he hasn't resigned

8:24 am on 27 June 2015

Sepp Blatter has added to speculation he may try to stay on as head of world football's governing body, but a source told Reuters the 79-year-old still intends to stand down as FIFA president.

Fifa president Sepp Blatter

Fifa president Sepp Blatter Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Blatter has told a Swiss newspaper he has not quit FIFA, which is gripped by a corruption scandal, and his comments seemed to be less final than in early June, when he said he would step down as FIFA president and call a leadership election.

However, a FIFA source close to the story told Reuters on Friday that Blatter's stance has not changed.

"He is going," the source said. "He did not use the word resign on June 2 but he did say he was laying down his mandate and that is exactly what he intends to do."

A former Blatter adviser had said previously that the long-serving FIFA president could go back on his promise to stand down from his role.

FIFA said at the time that Klaus Stoehlker, who advised Blatter during this year's FIFA election campaign, was no longer working with Blatter.

Fuelling scepticism over Blatter's departure was his decision to stand for re-election in 2015 after pledging not to run again in the run-up to his 2011 victory.

Blatter, who was re-elected in May, is under pressure to leave sooner rather than later as US and Swiss authorities investigate suspected bribery and corruption at FIFA. Blatter has not been charged with any wrongdoing.

Domenico Scala, the official overseeing the choice of a new president, has said Blatter's departure is an "indispensable" part of planned reforms to soccer's governing body.

Also on Friday, one of seven football officials arrested in Zurich last month on suspicion of racketeering following a US extradition request had a request for bail rejected, with a Swiss court saying he posed a "risk of flight".

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