Over three years after taking office to replace the scandal-hit Sepp Blatter, Gianni Infantino got the confirmatory vote of FIFA’s 211 member associations, re-elected here on Wednesday as president of the world football’s governing body.
The 49-year-old Swiss-Italian was the sole candidate running for the 2019-2023 term and the traditional vote was thus replaced with applause at FIFA’s 69th Congress.
Promising not to “stand still” but to develop the game and “defend football”, an emotional Infantino said in his closing speech that his priority is to create more youth competitions, to continue on developing women’s football and to organize a “world convention on football development”.
Ahead of the announcement of his re-election, Infantino summarized what the FIFA has achieved under his reign, given the task of restoring the governing body’s reputation after his predecessor Blatter’s multiple corruption scandals.
“Today nobody is talking about crisis, nobody is talking about rebuilding from scratch, nobody is talking about corruption.
“We have turned things around. FIFA has gone from being toxic, almost criminal, to what it should be, an organization that develops and cares about football,” he said.
Taking over the post from the disgraced Blatter in February 2016, Infantino has introduced the VAR at the 2018 Russia World Cup and push hard on boosting women’s football amid the continuous fight against corruption.