Adidas agrees to keep sponsoring scandal-hit FIFA
Adidas has agreed to continue sponsoring FIFA despite lingering
concerns about the crisis engulfing world football’s governing body
and asking on Friday for ”clarity” about a bribery scandal.
Sepp Blatter, who was re-elected as FIFA president on Wednesday,
has been urging key sponsors to retain their trust in the
organization, which had to suspend two executive committee members
on Sunday over the corruption scandal.
”Adidas enjoys a long-term partnership with FIFA as a sponsor
and supplier around their events at all levels of the game and we
have agreed to continue this partnership,” the sportswear giant
said in a statement to The Associated Press.
”Adidas will be an official sponsor of FIFA World Cup 2014 in
Brazil. Having said that, the negative tenor of the public debate
around FIFA at the moment is neither good for football nor for FIFA
including its partners and we hope that FIFA will do its best to
reach clarity on the allegations soon.”
A FIFA ethics panel suspended both Mohamed bin Hamman and Jack
Warner pending a full inquiry to study evidence that they arranged
to bribe Caribbean voters during bin Hammam’s presidential
challenge. The Qatari withdrew from the contest on Sunday, giving
Blatter a clear run to be re-elected for a fourth term on
Adidas was the first of FIFA’s leading corporate backers to
express concern about the corruption crisis, followed by statements
from Visa, Coca-Cola and Emirates Airline.