Soccer

UEFA: Former IOC official candidate to lead FIFA task force

NYON, Switzerland (AP) Former Olympic official Francois Carrard is the only current candidate to chair FIFA's reform task force, according to UEFA secretary general Gianni Infantino.

The task force has no leader weeks before a FIFA-set deadline of Sept. 24 to propose ideas for rebuilding the scandal-hit governing body's reputation.

World Cup sponsors Coca-Cola and Visa have asked FIFA to ensure the job goes to an ''eminent'' person from outside football.

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FIFA has promised to appoint an independent outsider after consulting the presidents of its six continental presidents, including UEFA's Michel Platini.

''He (Carrard) is an excellent person and he has the necessary experience,'' Platini's right-hand man Infantino said on Friday.

Carrard was the International Olympic Committee director general for 14 years, overseeing fallout and reforms after the Salt Lake City bidding corruption scandal broke in 1998.

The Lausanne-based lawyer declined comment to the Associated Press when asked about FIFA's offer.

Carrard worked for the IOC until 2003, including 12 years serving under the presidency of Juan Antonio Samaranch.

He has continued to represent the IOC in cases heard at the Court of Arbitration for Sport and sits on the board of IOC subsidiaries dealing with broadcasting and sponsorship.

Infantino said Carrard was ''a good proposal because you need someone who can unite.''

Proposals to reform FIFA - which could include limiting the terms of presidents, publishing salaries and vetting officials' integrity more strictly - will be enacted only if voted in by member federations at their Feb. 26 congress. The 209 members will also elect a successor to President Sepp Blatter that day.

''We must also reach out to a broad support,'' Infantino said of the task force's work.

If he accepts the offer, Carrard will lead an 11-member panel with his colleagues nominated by the confederations.

UEFA has already sent FIFA its two nominations to join the task force, said Infantino, who declined to identify the officials.