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Fifa rejects fresh Lord Triesman probe

By David Bond
BBC Sports Editor, Johannesburg

Lord Triesman
Triesman resigned just two days after England presented their 2018 bid book

Fifa's executive committee has rejected a bid to reopen the investigation into Lord Triesman's bribery claims which forced the former Football Association chairman to resign.

Although the head of Fifa's ethics committee, Claudio Sulser, found the FA and Lord Triesman had no case to answer on 28 May, his report had to be signed off by the executive committee at a meeting at Fifa's South Africa headquarters in Sandton on Monday morning.

BBC Sport understands some members of the committee, including the Argentine Fifa member Julio Grondona and others from South America, wanted Triesman and the FA to face charges over their conduct.

But Spanish Fifa member, Angel Maria Villar Llona, said in the meeting he had accepted Lord Triesman's apology and felt no further action should be taken.

Informed sources suggested the bid to reopen the affair was being used to "stir up" trouble around England's 2018 World Cup bid.

But Fifa agreed not to bring charges against the FA or Triesman.

It is thought a majority of the members were persuaded that the FA's swift action in removing Triesman as both chairman of the governing body and the 2018 bid following the affair meant there was no point in bringing further punishment.

With Triesman now out of football, any move to ban him from holding positions in the game was also seen as pointless.

Triesman was forced to resign last month after a private conversation with a former civil service colleague was secretly recorded and then published by a Sunday newspaper. The conversation included claims that the Spanish FA was looking for help to bribe referees at the World Cup in South Africa.

The FA immediately distanced themselves from the extraordinary claims and Triesman has since said that his comments were never supposed to be taken seriously.

Fifa's decision to drop the matter will come as a huge relief to England's World Cup bid who face a crucial week in Johannesburg as they try to repair any lasting damage caused by the controversy.

But Fifa's general secretary Jerome Valcke reiterated his warning to all bidding countries at Monday's executive committee meeting that they must adhere to the strict rules on avoiding criticism of rival bidders.

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see also
Triesman verdict pleases bid team
29 May 10 |  Football
Fifa urges rapid Triesman review
18 May 10 |  Football
Sugar eager for FA chairman post
17 May 10 |  Football
Gill and Parry backed for FA role
17 May 10 |  Football
Thompson named 2018 bid chairman
17 May 10 |  Football
Triesman quits FA & 2018 Cup jobs
16 May 10 |  Football
World Cup bids head-to-head
17 Oct 10 |  Football
Beckham hands over 2018 Cup bid
14 May 10 |  Football

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