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Last Updated: Monday, 28 May 2007, 16:24 GMT 17:24 UK
McBeth faces Fifa racism inquiry
John McBeth is leaving his role as Scottish FA president
McBeth was due to begin his new Fifa role this week
John McBeth faces a Fifa investigation days before he is due to be made Britain's new Fifa vice-president.

A new ethics committee will investigate McBeth, who stands accused of racism after allegedly suggesting African and Caribbean associations were corrupt.

He also said he had won the Fifa vote because other nations hate England.

McBeth will step down as Scottish Football Association president on Friday but the Fifa post will remain vacant during the investigation.

It is now possible that McBeth may not have the opportunity to take up his new role with Fifa.

I know two or three (at Fifa) whom I'd want to count my fingers after shaking hands with them

John McBeth

That would see the home nations holding another election to find the person to succeed Scottish lawyer David Will, who is retiring after 17 years with Fifa.

In his interview with a number of the Sunday newspapers, McBeth described Fifa president Sepp Blatter as a "tricky customer".

He went on to claim some Africa representatives have different ethics from the British "fair play" attitude.

"I know two or three (at Fifa) whom I'd want to count my fingers after shaking hands with them," he said.

"If I come across corruption, I have to expose it. I must try to stay true to my beliefs and hope I don't get seduced.

"By and large, the four British countries know what fair play is and when we are stepping out of line.

"But, as soon as you hit Africa, it's a slightly different kettle of fish. They're poor nations and want to grab what they can.

"I presume the Caribbean is much the same - they just come at it in a different way."
We all feel deeply insulted and we will support any moves to send McBeth back to Scotland where he belongs

Concacaf president Jack Warner

His outburst has provoked an angry response from Concacaf president Jack Warner, who is from Trinidad and Tobago and is one of seven Fifa vice-presidents.

"The entire confederation met and we decided to send a letter of condemnation to Fifa that this is unacceptable.," said Warner.

"Why did he only mention African and Caribbean countries?

"To me, that smacks of racism of the worst kind.

"We all feel deeply insulted and we will support any moves to send him back to Scotland where he belongs."

McBeth went on to claim he beat Football Association chairman Geoff Thompson and the Irish FA's Jim Boyce to the Fifa post because of resentment over English arrogance.

"I was the least not-liked," McBeth said. "I was thinking on the plane down: 'What in God's name am I going to London for?'

"We had it for 17 years with David Will, so it won't be a Scot again.

"Jim was saying what he'd do for Northern Ireland, others were saying it was England's turn.

"Unfortunately, when you deal with the English it tends to be 'their game' and they tend to expect.

"To put it mildly, they made a mess of it and I wandered through the middle. It's a very funny story."

McBeth added: "I'll have to be kinder to the English.

"I try to keep telling them their notion of themselves is unbelievable. The rest of the world hates their guts."

McBeth berates African FAs
27 May 07 |  African


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