Michel Platini has announced he will not stand against Sepp Blatter for the Fifa presidency and will instead run for re-election as UEFA president.
The 59-year-old Frenchman told UEFA delegates in Monaco that he had decided against standing for the Fifa post as he wants to continue his work as head of European football’s ruling body.
Platini said after the meeting: “This is the decision I have made. It is about what I want to do with Uefa.”
The European Fifa executive committee member Michel D’Hooghe welcomed Platini’s decision not to enter a contest against Blatter. He said: “It was a very positive message – he said he would like to continue as Uefa president and I am pleased that it means that this time there will be no battle between Fifa and Uefa.”
Platini’s decision comes as little surprise – standing against Blatter would have been an uphill struggle and would have meant the Frenchman not running for the Uefa presidency in March. There is, however, certain to be continuing pressure from Europe for Fifa to carry out more reforms and Platini remains unhappy Blatter, who was once his mentor, has reneged on his public promise not to stand for another term.
Five of Fifa’s six continental bodies have already announced their support for Blatter, only Europe has publicly opposed him.