Football

Greg Dyke and Michael van Praag, the heads of football’s English and Dutch national associations, spoke out against Sepp Blatter’s leadership of world governing body Fifa as the Swiss faced a tense meeting with delegates of European governing body Uefa yesterday (Tuesday).

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff has moved to defend spending on preparations for the 2014 World Cup, while Fifa has denied that it is making major revenues from the football showpiece at the expense of the Brazilian people.

David Beckham’s plans to bring a Major League Soccer franchise to Miami have suffered a major setback after the city’s mayor rejected plans to build a downtown waterfront stadium.

Asian Football Confederation president Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa has strengthened his position after the AFC’s Extraordinary Congress voted to merge the region’s presidency with the Fifa vice-presidency.

Fifa president Sepp Blatter has bemoaned what he described as a “storm against Fifa” over the awarding of the 2022 World Cup to Qatar.

Fifa’s commercial partners have waded into the debate over the governing body’s handling of the bidding process that led to the award of the hosting rights for football’s 2022 World Cup to Qatar.

Serbian football club Red Star Belgrade has been banned from participating in the Uefa Champions League next season, while two Turkish clubs have also been barred from competing in the Europa League.

Singapore businessman Peter Lim, the new owner of Spanish Liga football team Valencia, has struck a deal with national banking conglomerate Bankia to restructure the club’s substantial debts, while La Liga rival Malaga is facing fresh uncertainty over its ownership.

Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) president Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah has lashed out at the allegations of corruption surrounding the award of the 2022 Fifa World Cup to Qatar by claiming they are evidence of “racist actions” towards the country and Arabs in general.

Eduardo Paes, the Mayor of Rio de Janeiro, has claimed that organisers of the 2014 Fifa World Cup international football tournament have made a mistake by planning to stage matches in 12 different cities.

Serie A football club Cagliari is set to remain in Italian hands after owner Massimo Cellino announced he had struck a preliminary agreement to sell the team to businessman Tommaso Giulini.

Alibaba, China’s largest e-commerce company, has struck a deal to acquire 50 per cent of the country’s Guangzhou Evergrande football club.

English Premier League clubs’ total revenues reached a record £2.53bn (€3.10bn/$4.23bn), but the German Bundesliga remained Europe’s most profitable football league in 2012-13, according to the latest Annual Review of Football Finance by the Sports Business Group at financial services company Deloitte.

Australian A-League football club Melbourne Heart has been renamed Melbourne City FC.

Barcelona and the Spanish top-tier Liga football club’s former president, Sandro Rosell, have been summoned by a judge to give evidence in court over the tax evasion scandal surrounding the signing of Brazilian superstar Neymar.

Uefa president Michel Platini has claimed attempts are being made to “tarnish” his reputation by linking him to the corruption allegations surrounding Qatar’s successful bid to host the 2022 Fifa World Cup national team football tournament.

Major League Soccer franchise San Jose Earthquakes and NFL American football team San Francisco 49ers have entered into a five-year partnership designed to promote the South Bay region as a host of elite soccer events.