Boyce fears for FIFA future
Published : 05 Oct 2011 19:35:36
Jim Boyce believes there is a real "danger" of Britain losing their permanent FIFA vice-presidency within the next four years.
Boyce, who was appointed to the role in June, believes the Football Association and Scottish Football Association's opposition to Sepp Blatter's unchallenged re-election as FIFA president meant Britain could lose its privileged status when the Northern Irishman steps down in 2015.
"Yes, there is a danger," Boyce told the Leaders in Football conference. "I would be less than honest if I didn't say there was. The big worry now is that some of the European countries who always - as far as I'm aware - supported the British vice-presidency seat may now have a different interpretation. I honestly believe that bridges now need to be rebuilt."
FA chairman David Bernstein stood up at the FIFA Congress this summer to call for Blatter's re-election to be postponed, amid the corruption scandal that had engulfed the world game's governing body.
Only the SFA backed Bernstein's motion and he revealed on Wednesday morning that other members of UEFA tried to prevent his intervention.
Boyce said of the FA and SFA: "They did what they felt they had to do but I think they did go against the wishes of several European countries.
"I did hear some comments afterwards in the hall amongst some of the people that were in the hall because of what happened in that particular Congress."
He added of the prospect of Britain losing the permanent vice-presidency they have held since saving FIFA from financial ruin after the Second World War: "I would hope that in my four years of vice-presidency that I can convince people that should not be the situation."
Britain's permanent vice-presidency of FIFA is enshrined in the organisation's statutes but there have been attempts in the past to challenge it.
Any change to FIFA statutes would require the support of 75% of their members.