FIFA President, Gianni Infantino, has warned against re-starting football competitions too early amid the Coronavirus pandemic.
Infantino told FIFA’s 211 member associations on Friday that such behaviour would be irresponsible in a video message,
It would be recalled that soccer matches around the world has come to a standstill with domestic leagues on hold and major tournaments such as Euro 2020 and the Copa America postponed for one year as a result of Coronavirus pandemic.
“Our first priority, our principle, the one we will use for our competitions and encourage everyone to follow is that health comes first.
“I cannot stress this enough. No match, no competition, no league is worth risking a single human life. Everyone in the world should have this very clear in their mind,” Infantino said in a statement.
Meanwhile, discussions are being held around the world over when and how to re-start the season while some countries have disagreements over whether players should face pay cuts.
“It would be more than irresponsible to force competitions to resume if things are not 100 per cent safe.
“If we have to wait a little longer we must do so. It’s better to wait a little bit longer than to take any risks,” FIFA president said.
Ifantino reiterated that FIFA was assessing the financial impact of the stoppage so it could prepare the right response.
But in order to alleviate immediate financial problems, the FIFA President stated that, subject to relevant committee approval, the second part of member association operational costs from the FIFA Forward Programme due later this year be paid in advance.
Mr Infantino added that, given the exceptional circumstances, he has requested that the requirement for the fulfilment of the additional criteria be waived for both 2019 and 2020 in order for the full amount to be paid to all member associations.
“If football manages to have a discussion where everyone contributes positively, and keeps in mind the global interest over the individual one, I am convinced our future can be better than our past, and we will be better prepared for the times ahead,” the FIFA President said.