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Ricardo Teixeira out as head of Brazilian soccer
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His resignation comes a few months after his former father-in-law, Joao Havelange, resigned from the International Olympic Committee while facing a possible suspension for allegedly also taking ISL kickbacks when he was FIFA president.
Pressure for Teixeira’s resignation grew last month after the Folha de S. Paulo newspaper, Brazil’s largest, reported that prosecutors had allegedly found evidence linking him to a company that organized a game between Brazil and Portugal in 2008 in Brasilia. The company is being investigated for irregularities in organizing the match.
Teixeira was never convicted of any wrongdoing, but he was twice investigated by Brazil’s Congress, including over a contract signed with Nike.
He was also accused of unethical behavior by a former chairman of England’s Football Association, David Triesman, who said during a British parliamentary inquiry that Teixeira and other FIFA executive committee members engaged in improper conduct during bidding for the 2018 World Cup.
FIFA cleared the Brazilian, who said the allegations stemmed from England’s disappointment at losing the World Cup bid.
After Brazil won the 1994 World Cup, Teixeira found himself amid a controversy when players and officials tried to re-enter Brazil without paying proper taxes on gifts and other imported goods bought by them in the United States. Before the 2006 World Cup, prosecutors accused him and a tourism agency of selling tickets for the event without following legal procedures.
Teixeira seemed to have the support of FIFA President Sepp Blatter and at one point was touted as his possible successor. But their relationship appears to have weakened, especially after Blatter seemed set to allow the release of the documents that allegedly implicate Teixeira in the ISL case. FIFA postponed the publication, citing legal measures.
“There are no series of unfair attacks that can take away the satisfaction of seeing the happiness in the face of Brazilians after winning more than 100 titles, including two World Cups, five Copa Americas and three Confederations Cups,” Teixeira said.
He also thanked the Brazilian fans and said he will remain available to the Brazilian federation when needed. It remained unclear if Teixeira will also leave the FIFA executive committee, a position elected through the South American soccer confederation. Teixeira has been an executive member of FIFA since 1994.
FIFA wouldn’t immediately comment because it hadn’t been officially informed by the Brazilian federation or local organizing committee.
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