Pele saddened by Teixeira row

30 July 2011 07:30

The row over Brazil World Cup chief Ricardo Teixeira's attack on England has intensified with Pele saying the controversy is "not good" for the 2014 hosts ahead of today's qualifying draw.

Teixeira described the British as "pirates" and on Friday called the English media "corrupt". Pele, the legendary striker unveiled as the Brazil government's 2014 ambassador, has had his own differences with Teixeira and said the FIFA executive committee member should clear up the controversy.

Pele told a news conference: "This is not good for Brazil. Some people talk more than they know. I think that the controversy is not good for Brazil. With Ricardo we always have some confusion or misunderstanding when he does interviews. I hope from now on we can clear this away and he can work properly for the good of the World Cup."

The 64-year-old Teixeira refused to answer questions following a presentation on Brazil's World Cup host cities in Rio de Janeiro.

He said: "No English press." Asked why not, he replied: "Because they're corrupt."

Teixeira has been infuriated by allegations made by the BBC's Panorama that he received bribes from the collapsed FIFA marketing agency ISL.

He was also named by ex-FA chairman Lord Triesman in Parliament as one of four FIFA members who made improper demands during England's 2018 World Cup campaign, though FIFA have since cleared him of any wrongdoing.

Teixeira's hardline stance could become a worry for the Football Association but they have refused to get drawn into the controversy ahead of the draw, where England are in the pot of top seeds for the European qualifying competition.

The Teixeira issue may be a longer-term one however. In an interview in the Piaui Herald last month he said Triesman had made the allegations because he was angry they had lost the bid. As well as referring to the English as "a bunch of pirates", he recounted instances of English arrogance and even bad-mouthed English cuisine.

Teixeira said: "Triesman is having to explain how he spent 50million dollars, 15million of which was government funds, on England's campaign for the Cup. It's an absurd cost, there's no justification. They just can't take it."

Source: PA

World Cup Group G

Belgium 1 0 0 3 3
England 1 0 0 1 3
Tunisa 0 0 1 -1 0
Panama 0 0 1 -3 0
Last updated : 14:57