Former World Cup referee Pierluigi Collina is among nine new committee chairmen who have been named by soccer’s governing body FIFA.
FIFA has reduced its number of standing committees from 26 to nine under reforms which were passed by its Congress last February in response to the worst corruption scandal in its history.
Forty individuals and two sports marketing companies were indicted in the United States while other officials, including former FIFA president Sepp Blatter, have been banned by FIFA’s own ethics committee.
Italian Collina, who refereed to the 2002 World Cup final between Brazil and Germany, will head the referees’ committee which interprets the laws of the games and chooses officials for the World Cup and other FIFA tournaments.
Collina was previously head of refereeing at European soccer body UEFA, where Gianni Infantino was secretary general before he was elected FIFA president last February.
Canada’s Victor Montagliani, head of the CONCACAF Confederation which runs the sport in North and Central America and the Caribbean, will head the new football stakeholders committee, arguably the most important of the nine.
Former Brazil international Cafu and English Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore, are among the members of the committee which will deal with a number of key issues in the sport and is due to hold its first meeting in March.
FIFA says the committee deals with “the relationship between clubs, players, leagues, member associations, confederations and FIFA as well as with issues relating to the interests of club football worldwide.” In practice, the committee will have to address issues such as the financial gulf between the richest leagues and the rest, working conditions for players and fixture congestion which creates conflict between clubs and national associations.
Other members include Bobby Barnes, a former English footballer who is now on the board of the world players’ union FIFPro, Bundesliga chief executive Christian Seifert and former Netherlands goalkeeper Edwin van der Saar.
Alejandro Dominguez, head of the South American Football Confederation CONMEBOL, will chair the finance committee and African football boss Issa Hayatou will head the associations committee.