The battle for football isn't over.

It's only just beginning.

The game's hardest days are ahead of it as the struggle is joined to determine the future direction of the world's most popular - and profitable - sport.

Sepp Blatter's resignation means nothing if the decrepit institution that installed him as sport's most powerful potentate uses the same process to simply replaces him with another unaccountable plutocrat.

Which is exactly what it will do unless root and brach reform of the organization is not undertaken.

Before any election for a new President takes place the game requires a truth commission where all its dirty laundry can be aired in order to cleanse itself. 

There can be no confidence in the future without a clear understanding of the past.

The last stand...

The last stand...

This also extends to Football Federation Australia. For too long it has ducked and dived when it comes to being held to account for its activity during its ill fated World Cup bid. 

We need to know the truth about its relationship with consultants like Peter Hargitay and its dealings with the discredited Jack Warner 

Make no mistake, those who have been beneficiaries of FIFA's resources under Blatter's reign will be looking to protect the system that has delivered them the power and privilege they currently enjoy.

Blatter's resignation offers them an opportunity to claim this is the circuit breaker the game needs. 

They will be hoping that FIFA is a hydra that simple reconstitute itself with a new regent in a blue blazer continuing to dispense its largesse through  the type of patronage and corruption that has become FIFA's trademark.

It can't be allowed to happen.

Football will be given one chance to reform itself and that time is now. If the opportunity is squandered it will be a tragedy for the hundred's of millions of people across the globe who love the game.

 
Football in Rochina Fevala, Rio De Janeiro. 

Football in Rochina Fevala, Rio De Janeiro. 

 

It will not be easy.

Football's great power is its ability to traverse political, economic, cultural and religious boundaries. It is the one true universal language. 

This is also the game's great weakness. 

It makes it virtually impossible for the governance of the game to coalesce around a set of universal values and ethics that will be respected and adhered to by all.

This is the exact thing that the princess of privilege at FIFA have been so ready to exploit for their own enrichment for decades.  

Blatter's greatest allies are from those countries where regulation, transparency and institutional strength are unable to prevent the power of vested interest prevailing.

Convincing them that change is imminent and necessary will be a difficult job. It will threaten scores of little empires that have thrived  under his tenure.

The game could be in danger of splitting. The industrialized western democracies will argue for a FIFA that is transparent and accountable. 

They will campaign for a realignment of the power structure in the organization that will end the ridiculously disproportionate voting structure that allows a small island nation like Montserrat (population 4,900) to have the same voting power within FIFA as World Cup powerhouse Germany.

If the campaign for such reform is seen as an attempt to reimpose a European hegemony within the game it will be resisted fiercely.

It's a clash of cultures that reflects the geo-politics of the wider world. 

It's a difficult and delicate balance to be struck but there is no other option than to try.

The biggest prize in the game is currently on the line. The future of football itself.

Losing is simply not an option.

 

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