It was refreshing when Michel Platini the respected ex juventus and France midfielder took over from the long serving Swede Lennart Johansson as UEFA boss.
Many of us thought that Mr. Johansson had paid his dues well and that it was time for a young, dynamic individual with innovative ideas to lead the organization and I thought Plattini filled the bill.
Since his assumption of office, he has chalked some laudable successes to make us (those who were in support of his candidacy) believe that he is the right person to lead UEFA. For instance, it was during his tenure that the Uefa champion’s league was expanded to accommodate its current number of teams and he also introduced a format of qualification which made it possible to have a team from one of Europe’s “lesser leagues” to qualify for the group stages of the competition. He also was instrumental in the expansion of the Euro tournament from16 teams to 24 teams from 2016 in France.
However, recent happenings in the game have cast serious doubts on the credibility of Monsieur Platini and UEFA itself. For instance his staunch opposition to the introduction of goal line technology and his insistence on the use of extra officials, whom it has to be said, has proved ineffectual, smacks of a man who may have lost touch with the modern game. What is even more damning is the perception of his and UEFA’S bias towards Barcelona. Some have even gone as far as renaming UEFA,”UEFALONA”.
His recent criticism of Fifa for awarding the Ballon D’or to Cristiano Ronaldo would do nothing but reinforce this perceived bias. He said “Fifa have changed Ballon D’or for the worse.Ronaldo is a beautiful Ballon D’or winner, but I am very disappointed for Frank Ribery,” he told L’Equipe 21.Seriously,next year or the next again it will come back to Messi or Ronaldo again. For 50 years, I think the Ballon D’or took into account results and titles and this is no longer the case”. He continued “I think if Franck didn’t win it in the year when he won all the tiles there is a problem as was the case with The Spanish players in 2010”
He went ahead to say something has changed about the Ballon D’or since it went to FIFA. My simple question is where was Platini when Sneijder was blatantly denied the award in 2010 when he won an unprecented treble with Inter Milan (first time in the history of Serie A that a team had won the ucl, serie a title and the coppa Italia) and was also instrumental in Holland’s march to the world cup final? Or is it because his “favourite” player won the award that time? Or he is speaking this time because he is French and so he is trying to be patriotic? I want to play the devil’s advocate and suggest that the Platini would not have made these statements had Messi won.
Well I want to remind Mr. Platini that the award is not given out to the player with the most trophies otherwise most of the Bayern players stood an equal chance as Ribery of winning it, but rather it is given to the player outstanding in the calendar year. Facts don’t lie and everyone knows Ronaldo had a superlative 2013 scoring 69 goals and single handedly sending his nation to the world cup.
In case he has also forgotten this is not the first time a player has won the award without winning a trophy.Figo and Ronaldinho did it back in 2000 and 2004 respectively when it was still organized by the French magazine.
Even though there is no clearly defined criteria set by FIFA for the award, any objective oberserver could clearly see Ronaldo was the stand out player and most deserving of the award.
Platini should stop distorting certain facts and making himself unpopular.
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