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CBF Considering Switching its Allegiance in FIFA's Presidential Elections

02/24/2016 - 10h23



After having made a pact with the other South American football federations to vote for the Swiss Gianni Infantino in FIFA's presidential elections, the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) is considering changing its vote at the last minute. The election is on Friday.

Karim Jaafar/AFP
(FILES) This file photo taken on January 31, 2016 shows the head of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) and FIFA presidential candidate, Bahraini Sheikh Salman Bin Ebrahim Al-Khalifa answering AFP journalists' questions during an interview on January 31, 2016 in the Qatari capital Doha. Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al-Khalifa is a blue-blooded contender in the FIFA leadership race who emerged from nowhere to become a frontrunner to lead world football. / AFP / Karim JAAFAR
The FIFA presidential candidate, Bahraini Sheikh Salman Bin Ebrahim Al-Khalifa in the Qatari capital Doha.

With Bahrain's Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim al-Khalifa growing in stature as the election draws closer, the Brazilians have decided to adopt a more pragmatic position, deciding that they will listen to all candidates before pledging their support.

Marco Polo Del Nero, the CBF president, despite being currently suspended, has been in contact with the bosses of foreign federations and senior members of the CBF regarding a possible change of support. He is concerned that there will be reprisals were the Bahraini to win.

Del Nero has been suspended from the CBF since December after being accused by the FBI of participating in a bribery scheme. FIFA is suffering from similar troubles, with the election of the new president taking place during the worst crisis in its 100-year history.

Al-Khalifa is head of the Asian Football Confederation and has the support of almost all the national federations on the continent - 46 countries will vote.

Brazil may not be the only country to abandon Infantino in the final straight. Other South American countries have told the CBF bosses that they are also considering changing their vote.

The Frenchman Jérôme Champagne, a former FIFA executive; the Jordanian Ali Bin Al Hussein and the South African Tokyo Sexwale are also in the running, though it looks likely that Sexwale will withdraw.

Translated by TOM GATEHOUSE
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