The fall of the house of FIFA The multimillion-dollar corruption at the heart of global soccer

David Conn, 1965-

Book - 2017

When Sepp Blatter joined FIFA in 1975 it had just twelve employees. Forty years later, the FBI have accused fourteen executives of forty-seven counts of money laundering, racketeering and tax evasion linked to kickbacks. This book tells the story of how football got big, how FIFA got corrupt and what this means for soccer fans around the world.

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2nd Floor 796.334/Conn Checked In
New York, NY : Nation Books ©2017.
Main Author
David Conn, 1965- (author)
Physical Description
328 pages ; 25 cm
Includes bibliographical references (pages 311-312) and index.
  • 1. The People's Game
  • 2. Fifa's Smiley Face
  • 3. 1904: 'A Pure Sport'
  • 4. 1974
  • 5. 1998: President Blatter
  • 6. 2010: 'And the Host of the 2022 World Cup Will Be... Qatar!'(1)
  • 7. 'Crisis? What is a Crisis?'
  • 8. Straight Citizens
  • 9. The Dr João Havelange Centre of Excellence
  • 10. Bribery in Switzerland is not a Crime
  • 11. The Dirty Linen
  • 12. 'Tell Me What You Did'
  • 13. Mr President Integrity
  • 14. The World Cup of Fraud
  • 15. Le roi se Meurt
  • 16. 'The Money of Fifa is Your Money!'
  • 17. Say it Ain't So, Franz
  • 18. Tainted History
  • 19. 'And the Host of the 2022 World Cup Will Be... Qatar!' (2)
  • 20. The Boss
  • Bibliography
  • Acknowledgements
  • Index
Review by Booklist Review

When, in 2010, the members of FIFA's executive committee awarded the 2022 World Cup to Qatar a tiny, brutally hot, oil-rich nation with no appreciable soccer history it was perhaps the most visible symptom of what many had alleged was a long pattern of corruption in the governing body of the world's most popular sport. Founded in 1904 for the simple purpose of organizing games between teams of its handful of member countries, the Fédération Internationale de Football Association would grow to comprise 211 countries and a fantastically rich stream of TV and sponsorship revenue and a culture of personal enrichment that led in 2015 to police raids, criminal charges, and a wholesale change of personnel at the top. Award-winning journalist Conn chronicles the mess with authority derived from his Guardian reporting and firsthand interviews with key figures, including disgraced former FIFA president Sepp Blatter. Though end notes and an index would have been useful resources, Conn's account is comprehensive and essential. It's depressing, too, but with comprehensive reform still yet to be realized, fans shouldn't look away.--Graff, Keir Copyright 2017 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Library Journal Review

FIFA's (Fédération Internationale de Football Association) World Cup Tournament is a global quadrennial celebration of soccer. Behind the cheers and flag waving, scandal festered within FIFA in recent years, including cash in brown envelopes, secret bank accounts, and tax evasion. In a story that took more than a decade to expose, lifelong fan and journalist Conn (The Beautiful Game) left no stone unturned in his efforts to follow the money, skillfully re-creating a time line of the corruption that threatened the very integrity of the game. Conn's meticulous research and smooth writing style bring this unseemly chapter in FIFA history to a close, with realistic hope for the future of the most popular sport on earth. -VERDICT Serious sports historians and soccer fans will find this to be the conclusive account of the recent international FIFA scandal. As we look ahead to the 2018 World Cup, this is also a timely reminder that money and power are always a threat to high ideals in sports.-Janet Davis, Darien P.L., CT © Copyright 2017. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.