Sports / Soccer

Beckenbauer and Villar named in FIFA ethics probe

(China Daily) Updated: 2015-10-22 14:25

Beckenbauer and Villar named in FIFA ethics probe

File photo of former FIFA executive committee member Franz Beckenbauer speaking to the media during a news conference in Seoul June 3, 2013. Beckenbauer, one of Germany's greatest footballers, and Spanish football federation president Angel Maria Villar are among individuals being investigated by FIFA's Ethics Committee, it said in a statement October 21, 2015. [Photo/Agencies]

ZURICH - The FIFA scandal swept up one of the greatest soccer players of all time on Wednesday, when Franz Beckenbauer's name appeared on a new list of individuals facing possible sanction from the scandal-hit body's ethics committee.

FIFA and UEFA vice-president Angel Maria Villar of Spain and other former FIFA executive committee members were also named on Wednesday.

Earlier this month FIFA suspended president Sepp Blatter for 90 days along with European soccer head Michel Platini - like Beckenbauer, once a legendary international player.

The ethics committee was given the right to disclose information about cases by FIFA's executive committee on Tuesday and wasted no time in taking advantage of its new freedom.

The committee said it had completed investigations into both Beckenbauer and Villar and the cases had been passed to its ethics judge for a final decision.

A spokesman for the Adjudicatory Chamber of the Ethics Committee said both cases related to non-cooperation with the committee's investigations.

Beckenbauer was a World Cup winner with West Germany as a player and coach and a FIFA executive committee member from 2007 to 2011.

Villar has been president of the Spanish Football Federation since 1988 and is a vice-president of both FIFA and European governing body UEFA as well as head of FIFA's legal committee.

In June 2014, Beckenbauer was suspended for 90 days by FIFA for refusing to cooperate with then ethics investigator Michael Garcia's probe into the World Cup votes. The ban was lifted after two weeks when the German agreed to answer Garcia's questions but his behavior has faced further scrutiny from Garcia's replacement as investigator, Cornel Borbely.

The ethics committee confirmed that, as widely reported, "proceedings are ongoing" against Blatter and Platini "regarding a payment of CHF 2 million from FIFA to Michel Platini in February 2011".

Both men have already been given 90-day provisional bans pending their full investigations and are appealing against those suspensions.

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