Brazil's Havelange, ex-FIFA boss, hospitalized

19 March 2012 04:47

Joao Havelange, the legendary former president of world football governing body FIFA, has been admitted to a Rio hospital following a serious infection, a spokesman for the medical institution said Monday.

"Havelange was hospitalized late Sunday with a serious infection and is undergoing exams to determine the source of the infection," the spokesman for Samaritano hospital said.

A treating physician, Joao Mansur Filho, described the 95-year-old Havelange's condition as "serious" in a statement released by the hospital.

The former FIFA boss was put in a coronary care unit and was receiving intravenous antibiotic treatment.

Havelange is the former father-in-law of Ricardo Teixeira, who last week resigned as head of Brazilian football and as chief of Brazil's organizing committee for the 2014 World Cup following a spate of corruption allegations.

In December, Havelange himself resigned as a member of the International Olympic Committee after 48 years just days before an ethics hearing into allegations of corruption.

He was under investigation for his links with FIFA's former marketing agency, International Sport and Leisure (ISL), which went bankrupt in 2001 with debts of around $300 million.

Havelange, who competed at two Olympic Games in 1936 in Berlin as a swimmer and then in the 1952 edition in Helsinki as a member of the water polo team, is credited with turning football in modernising the sport into the moneymaking industry it is today.

He was also instrumental in bringing the 2016 Olympics to Rio de Janeiro and to South America for the first time when the IOC elected the city as the host in 2009 in Copenhagen.

Source: AFP