Wednesday Kickoff: FIFA to release documents, Ajax-AZ to start over & more

Wednesday Kickoff: FIFA to release documents, Ajax-AZ to start over & more

European Soccer

Wednesday Kickoff: FIFA to release documents, Ajax-AZ to start over & more


Blatter (Reuters Pictures)


FIFA has been ordered to release documents pertaining to its involvement with former marketing partner ISL by the Swiss supreme court.

The documents contain information about several FIFA members who took millions of dollars in kickbacks from ISL during the negotiation of television broadcast deals for the World Cup, with former FIFA president Joao Havelange and 2014 World Cup organizer Ricardo Teixeira at the forefront of the scandal.

FIFA said it will not appeal the decision, although it has 30 days for a change of heart. Current FIFA president Sepp Blatter is not implicated in the case and has stated repeatedly that he would release the documents willingly. Blatter orginally planned to release the documents this December, but a legal challenge prevented that from happening.

Here are some more stories to kick off your Wednesday:


The Dutch Cup match between Ajax and AZ Alkmaar that is now infamous for an Ajax fan running onto the field and attacking AZ goalkeeper Esteban Alvarado will be replayed in its entirety behind closed doors. The match will take place in full on Jan. 19, with the winner moving on to the quarterfinals.

Alvarado was sent off for retaliating against the fan by kicking him while he laid on the ground. AZ then left the field and refused to carry on the match, which was in the 36th minute with Ajax leading 1-0 at the time. Esteban's red card was rescinded the next day by the Dutch federation. 

The fan, meanwhile, reportedly received a 30-year stadium ban from Ajax as punishment for his role in the incident.


Israel named Eli Guttman as national team coach in a move reportedly seen as widely popular within the country. Guttman, 53, is a native of Israel and received unanimous backing from the IFA board.

He will replace Luis Fernandez after the Frenchman failed to qualify for Euro 2012. Guttman's managerial experience comes primarily from managing club sides in Israel and Cyprus.


With the January transfer window only a few days away from opening, several big names are reportedly on the selling block:

  • Dimitar Berbatov, who has struggled to find a starting spot with Manchester United despite an impressive goal tally, is rumored to be in contact with Bayer Leverkusen. Berbatov spent five seasons with the Bundesliga club before joining Tottenham Hotspur in 2006 and then moving to Manchester United.
  • Chelsea winger Florent Malouda is in a similar predicament and is a reported target of newly-rich Paris-St. Germain.


Interested in the document coming out of FIFA? Was it the right call to replay the Ajax-AZ game? Where would you like to see some of the big names end up in January? 

Share your thoughts below.

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