UEFA elects surprise candidate Ceferin as new leader

0
20

Athens—UEFA on Wednesday overwhelmingly elected Slovenian lawyer Aleksander Ceferin, almost unknown three months ago, as its new president to lead the world’s most powerful football confederation into a new era after Michel Platini was forced to resign.
Ceferin, 48, beat Dutch football association chief Michael van Praag by 42 votes to 13 in the first round of voting after promising “bold” moves and an end to “intrigues” as the 55-member European body faces challenges over its flagship Champions League.
“The wind of change is blowing through European football. It is the end of one era and the start of a new one,” Ceferin said in a speech to a special congress in Athens shortly after Platini gave a farewell address and left through a side door.
Ceferin highlighted the credibility challenges facing scandal-tainted football, along with regular accusations of match-fixing and doping.
But he told a special congress in Athens: “I am not here to emphasise the negativitites that surround us. I don’t want to live in an empire of fear where every day we wake and see another negativity surfacing.—AFP