Ever since the good, godfearing Anglo nations were shut out of the 2018 and 2022 World Cups, rumors have flown that Russia and Qatar bribed their way to the top. No one would be surprised because it's FIFA, but it was also sour grapes. And maybe it still is, but this time England is naming names.
Former FA head and 2018 campaign chairman Lord Triesman went before a Parliamentary committee today and dished some of what he knew about FIFA executive committee members looking to cash in during the bidding process. And there's some great stuff in here.
• Jack Warner, FIFA Vice President, Trinidad and Tobago: Wanted £500,000 from England to purchase earthquake-stricken Haiti's TV rights. The money would have been channeled through Warner, of course. He also wanted a facility purchased in his home nation:
"Jack Warner was very concerned that after all his years he had nothing to consider his legacy," Triesman told the committee.
"He proposed some school or academy should be built and a set of offices that would be his legacy to Trinidad & Tobago.
"Dave said 'you must be joking, that must be about £2.5 million,' and Warner nodded.
"He said the money could be channelled through him and he would ensure that it was appropriately spent."
• Nicolás Leoz, Paraguay: A very strange man. He lied about being invited to the Royal Wedding, he really wanted to be Sir Nicolas. Says Triesman,
"Mr Leoz said that he believed an appropriate way of recognising his role in football was not through money, but through an honour.
"He thought a knighthood would be appropriate, and I told him that was completely impossible."
• Ricardo Teixeira, Brazil: Had an odd conversation with Triesman in Qatar, in which the Brazilian asked the 2018 head to "tell him what I had for him."
• Worawi Makudi, Thailand: Wanted England to schedule a friendly with Thailand, and would pocket the TV rights money.
So that's what we have. No immediate response from FIFA just yet (Warner calls it "nonsense"), and it would be hard to act without any more evidence. Which isn't to say fans in England and the US, which lost its own bid under unclear circumstances, don't have reason to be pissed this morning.