PARIS (Reuters) – Ex-UEFA president Michel Platini has criticised former FIFA chief Sepp Blatter, saying the Swiss who led soccer’s world body for 17 years was determined to make him “his last scalp”.
Platini and Blatter were banned from all football-related activities, initially for eight years, over a 2 million Swiss francs (1.6 million pounds) payment FIFA made to Platini in 2011, with Blatter’s approval, for work done a decade earlier.
The Frenchman said the 81-year-old Blatter was the most selfish person he had ever known. “He thought he would grow old, finish then die and be buried in FIFA. It was his wish,” Platini told Le Monde in an interview published on Thursday.
“He always said that I would be his last scalp. I know he had a fixation on me, to the end. Don’t always believe what Blatter says. He’ll always tell you what you want to hear but he’s an exceptional political animal,” he added.
He was sanctioned by FIFA’s ethics committee after Blatter authorised the 2 million Swiss francs payment to Platini that amounted to “undue gifts” and violated FIFA’s code of ethics.
“I still don’t know what I’ve done wrong,” said Platini.
Blatter has also always denied any wrongdoing.
The bans given to Platini and Blatter were cut to six years by FIFA’s appeals committee before the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) then reduced Platini’s suspension to four years.
(Reporting by Julien Pretot; Editing by Ken Ferris; Editing by Ken Ferris)