Football: Fifa's 'culture of intimidation' must end, says presidential candidate Prince Ali

Prince Ali bin Al-Hussein of Jordan launched his bid for the Fifa presidency on Tuesday and said it was time for the "culture of intimidation" in world football's governing body to end. -- PHOTO: AFP
Prince Ali bin Al-Hussein of Jordan launched his bid for the Fifa presidency on Tuesday and said it was time for the "culture of intimidation" in world football's governing body to end. -- PHOTO: AFP

LONDON, (REUTERS) - Prince Ali bin Al-Hussein of Jordan launched his bid for the Fifa presidency on Tuesday and said it was time for the "culture of intimidation" in world football's governing body to end.

He also called for a public debate among the four candidates in the race including incumbent Sepp Blatter "to set out our positions and for people to know exactly where we stand".

Prince Ali, 39, Fifa's Asian vice-president for the last four years and a member of the ruling body's executive committee, said he "could not sit through" another four years in the current circumstances.

"There has been a culture of intimidation within Fifa," he told a news conference. "In the past people have taken a principled stand and they have ended up being punished for it. I hope things are played fairly and in the right way now.

"Obviously the incumbent has a natural advantage but I want to assure the national associations we are moving in the right direction."

As well as Prince Ali and Blatter, the other contenders are former Portugal international Luis Figo and Michael van Praag, the president of the Dutch FA.

Prince Ali said the countries who had nominated him were his own Jordan, England, Malta, Georgia, Belarus and the United States.

The election will be held on May 29 at the Fifa Congress in Zurich.