Former FIFA president Blatter ‘accepts’ 2018 World Cup invite from Putin

Sepp Blatter would be in breach of FIFA ban unless appeal is overturned by CAS.

Christophe Ena/AP

Sepp Blatter will reportedly attend the 2018 World Cup finals as a guest of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The disgraced ex-FIFA president is serving a six-year ban from all football related activities – meaning he can only attend football matches as a paying member of the public.

Blatter was banned along with former UEFA boss Michel Platini over a £1.35m "disloyal payment" between the pair -both hope to have their bans overturned by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).


According to a report in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Blatter has written to accept Putin’s offer to be his guest of honour for the 2018 finals.

"If I am invited, I take care to accept invitations," Blatter told the German daily.

If Blatter’s ban is not overturned by CAS, he would be contravening it by attending as a guest of Putin – but he added he hoped this would not be an issue. 

"I am not a prophet and I don’t know what the world will look like in 2018," he said.

Since he was first provisionally suspended in October last year, Blatter has not entered a football stadium.

He has not even been allowed to enter his office at FIFA’s headquarters in Zurich and his personal effects were sent to him in crates.