Top FIFA official D’Hooge cleared of wrongdoing in World Cup bids

Michel D'Hooghe is FIFA's longest-standing executive committee member.

Andrew Boyers/Action Images

FIFA’s longest-standing executive committee member, Belgian doctor Michel D’Hooghe, has been cleared of four allegations of wrongdoing in the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bidding contests.

FIFA says the judging chamber of its ethics committee ”is satisfied that no further investigation is needed.”

D’Hooghe, who joined FIFA’s ruling board 27 years ago, denied any misconduct in the bidding contests, in which his native Belgium was a losing candidate.

FIFA says a painting given to D’Hooghe by a Russian former board colleague ”has no commercial value, as confirmed by two appraisals, and was offered as a friendly gesture.”

The ethics investigation also dismissed claims that D’Hooghe helped his son get a job at the Aspetar medical clinic in Qatar.