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"She is used to managing big organisations, big
budgets, human resources, finance," Infantino told
FIFA s membership. "She will bring a fresh wind
to FIFA---somebody from outside not somebody
from inside, not somebody from the past. Somebody
new, somebody who can help us do the right thing
in the future."
In a shakeup of FIFA in the wake of scandals,
a separation of powers is being implemented that
is intended to hand the CEO-like secretary general
control of business operations.
But Samoura, who speaks French, English, Span-
ish, and Italian, appears to have no experience
dealing with commercial deals and broadcasters---
a key part of the job as FIFA s top administrator.
Infantino appears to have more experience in those
areas, given he was elected FIFA president in Feb-
ruary after nine years leading UEFA s business oper-
ations as general secretary.
FIFA pointed to Samoura s experience coordi-
nating the activities of around 2,000 UN staff with
oversight over security in Nigeria.
"She has a proven ability to build and lead teams,
and improve the way organisations perform," Infan-
tino said. "Importantly for FIFA, she also under-
stands that transparency and accountability are at
the heart of any well-run and responsible organ-
Also, FIFA lifted Indonesia s suspension from
world soccer. Indonesian national and club teams,
referees, and officials were banned over government
interference in the running of the national feder-
Indonesia was readmitted after the government
agreed to end its suspension of the soccer federation,
but the national team has missed out on qualifying
for the 2018 World Cup and 2019 Asian Cup while
Benin joined Kuwait in being suspended due to
government interference in their federations inde-
MEXICO CITY---FIFA broke new ground
by appointing a Senegalese United Nations
official as its first woman and first non-
European secretary general yesterday.
Fatma Samoura has no experience work-
ing in sports but FIFA President Gianni
Infantino hopes that will help it try to
regain the trust and credibility of the world
after far-reaching corruption, bribery, and
"We want to embrace diversity and we
believe in gender equality," Infantino told
his first FIFA Congress as president since
succeeding the banned Sepp Blatter.
Moya Dodd, a member of the ruling
FIFA Council, called it a "landmark day
for women in FIFA."
The 54-year-old Samoura, who will
replace the fired Jerome Valcke if she passes
an eligibility check, is currently working
in development for the UN in Nigeria.
FIFA expects her to start work at its
Zurich headquarters in mid-June, with
just a year until Russia hosts the Confed-
erations Cup, the 2018 World Cup warm-
up event, and ongoing concerns about
preparations for the 2022 tournament
Saturday, May 14, 2016 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
BARCELONA---It all comes down to the last
With the title still up for grabs, Barcelona and
Real Madrid have one game to play today with
only one point separating them.
Barcelona can retain its title, making it eight
in 12 years and 24 in club history, with a victory
at Granada. At the same time, Madrid visits
Deportivo La Coruna hoping to culminate a spec-
tacular comeback and get a huge boost of con-
fidence for its Champions League final against
Atletico Madrid on May 28.
"This match is custom made for Barcelona s
players. This type of game is what inspires teams,"
Barcelona coach Luis Enrique said Friday. "There
are games when you have to motivate players,
but there is more than enough motivation for
this game. It is more about controlling the emo-
Barcelona holds a one-point advantage and
the tiebreaker over Madrid, so the team coached
by Zinedine Zidane needs to beat Deportivo and
hope Barcelona drops points to add to its record
Zidane has asked his players to concentrate on
their match, and said he would not follow the
score from Barcelona s game from the dugout
while his team plays.
"I m not going to find out what has happened
(with Barcelona s match) until the end," Zidane
said. "We don t depend on ourselves, but we have
to think only about our match and how we can
win and get the three points. Then we will see.
"We have faith. We have won 11 games (in a
row) and we are within one point with one match
to go. We have to believe until the very last sec-
play last matches
with title in balance
FIFA appoints UN official as
1st woman secretary general
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