The global web of Fifa’s corruption allegations

In 2013, former Fifa official Chuck Blazer pleaded guilty to helping to arrange bribes during the awarding of the 2010 soccer world cup – a bid that South Africa successfully won.

That testimony was sealed until May 27 this year, when US prosecutors announced that they would be charging fourteen officials, nine from global football giant Fifa and four business people, with corruption.

Their alleged crimes involve bribery-for-broadcasting-rights during soccer World Cups, as well as bribery related to the awarding of rights to host the World Cups.

South Africa stands accused of paying a $10-million bribe to Fifa officials in exchange for their support for South Africa’s right to host the 2010 cup.

While no one in South Africa has been charged, the US investigation has revealed that at least ten other countries are somehow implicated in bribery allegations.

The allegations include that nearly every world cup, from 1996 onwards, and at least two future cups to be held in Russia and Qatar, is tainted by bribery and corruption.

Swiss authorities are also investigating some allegations, while The Guardian reported this week that the United Kingdom’s Serious Fraud Office is also “actively reviewing” the material made available by US prosecutors.

Now, on Wednesday, Fifa has announced that the 2026 World Cup bidding process has been postponed.  

As more the allegations continue to be revealed, and as the effects of the US indictment ripple around the world, it is likely that more countries will be implicated. Here are ten countries that have been implicated so far:

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Sarah Evans
Sarah Evans

Sarah Evans interned at the Diamond Fields Advertiser in Kimberley for three years before completing an internship at the Mail & Guardian Centre for Investigative Journalism (amaBhungane). She went on to work as a Mail & Guardian news reporter with areas of interest including crime, law, governance and the nexus between business and politics. 

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