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Tuesday Kickoff: FIFA reform group suggests term limits; Ballon d’Or shortlist revealed; and more


A term limit and age limit for FIFA’s presidents may soon be adopted if FIFA’s reform committee has anything to say about it.

Soccer’s world governing body held its first executive committee meeting since suspending Sepp Blatter, Jerome Valcke and Michel Platini Tuesday, and the reform committee recommended a change to the presidential term limit, suggesting a 12-year term limit with an age limit of 74. FIFA also decided to keep the presidential election date of Feb. 26, while FIFA’s ruling body agreed to “more transparency for ethics proceedings” while the cases against the trio of suspended members continues.

Platini is seeking to become the next president after Blatter announced he would step down in February, but Prince Ali bin al-Hussein is also running for the position. However, the current UEFA president is currently under investigation for an alleged payment he received in 2011 for work he did for Blatter from 1999-2002.

Meanwhile, the reform committee also urged FIFA to adopt certain principles to help it improve for the better.

“It is abundantly clear that football fans and our commercial partners will no longer accept anything short of full transparency in how football is governed at the global, regional, and local level,” a principal from the reform committee reads. “We should expect nothing less from each other. Each of us has perspectives on reform and it is critical that FIFA remains a forum for honest and open discussions.

“And publicly, FIFA will be well – served by making comments that recognize the truth of the situation: FIFA has a long road ahead, it needs serious organizational and cultural reform, and all of us, as FIFA members, are committed to both.”

Here are some more news and notes:


FIFA announced the 23-man shortlist for the 2015 Ballon d’Or, and while common names like Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Zlatan Ibrahimović were included, other no-so-typical names also made their way on the list.

Belgian international Kevin De Bruyne was included after having a record-setting year in the Bundesliga with Wolfsburg during the 2014-15 season. He assisted 21 times in league competition, a new record for the German league. Overall, he scored 16 goals and assisted 27 times across all competitions.

Yaya Toure, Neymar, Gareth Bale, Ivan Rakitić, Luis Suárez and Thomas Müller were some notable inclusions. Javier Mascherano and Andrés Iniesta were the other Barcelona players included, bringing the teams total to six on the 23-man shortlist.

In total, 14 of the 23 nominees hail from UEFA nations, eight from CONMEBOL and only one from CAF. No players from a CONCACAF, an AFC or an OFC federation made the cut.


Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain are set to do battle in arguably the biggest UEFA Champions League match so far this year, but one of the former’s best players is set to miss it due to a recurring injury.

Gareth Bale has been ruled out of Real Madrid’s UCL match at Parc des Princes a left calf injury that has seen him miss time for club before. The good news for the Spanish giant, though, is that Croatian midfielder Luka Modric has been included on the game-day roster and trained with the team Tuesday morning.

“Following the tests carried out on Gareth Bale in the Sanitas la Moraleja University Hospital, the player has been diagnosed with a soleus muscle injury in his left leg,” a statement from the club reads. “His recovery will continue to be assessed.”


FIFA announced the shortlist for Coach of the Year award, and all expect one head coach, Chile boss Jorge Sampaoli, manage a club team in Europe. (REPORT)

Nigerian international Emmanuel Emenike, 28, retires from international soccer. (REPORT)

Former France and Liverpool striker Djibril Cisse, 34, officially retired from the game. (REPORT)

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