We all know about FIFA’s corruption by now. We also know the story won’t end anytime soon. There will be more audacious revelations in the near future, regarding the exploits and criminal behaviour of FIFA executives. So let’s have some fun with it.
The more I think about FIFA, the more the shady cast that governed the sport of soccer remind me of a rogues gallery from the James Bond franchise. Admittedly, I’m a huge James Bond fan and have watched the movies many times. So I may be somewhat stretching reality but this particular piece is supposed to be fun. So without further ado, here are the FIFA officials and their Bond villain counterparts.
Sepp Blatter/Ernst Stavro Blofeld
This one is obvious. One is a megalomaniacal madman, hell-bent on ruling the world no matter the cost to society, the other is Blofeld.
Sepp Blatter was the head of FIFA and ruled it with an iron fist. Whether it was accepting bribes (allegedly), laughing at his critics with devilish glee, financed a movie about himself that was so self-indulgent it made Mr. Burns blush, making sexist comments about women players or announcing himself as president of everybody, Blatter is a delusional human who only cares about himself.
Blofeld is the leader of SPECTRE (Special Executive for Counter-intelligence, Terrorism, Revenge and Extortion) has attempted to either take over or destroy the world, only to be foiled by the suave British secret agent. Blofeld did some terrible things as well like assassinating Bond’s wife Tracy (actually Irma Bunt pulled the trigger in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service but we know it was Blofeld’s idea), cloning himself through plastic surgery (Diamonds Are Forever) and owning a pool filled with piranhas (You Only Live Twice).
There is a cuddly side to Blofeld as he is very fond of cats. Preferably, white ones.
To the best of our knowledge, Blatter hasn’t ordered a hit on someone’s wife but I wouldn’t be surprised if he did have a swimming pool filled with man-eating piranhas or sharks somewhere in his lair. As for cloning himself, let’s not give him any ideas. But I wouldn’t be surprised is Blatter has a white cat to make him look loveable. But nothing will make Blatter loveable.
Jack Warner/Dr Kananga aka Mr. Big
Ah, Jack Warner. What can be said about a man who believed a report in The Onion that the USA would host the World Cup in 2015. At least Dr Kananga isn’t that gullible but he did believe in a lovely tarot card reader named Solitaire who could predict the future.
As for similarities, both have diplomatic immunity over tiny Caribbean island countries. Both desperately want to crack the American market and both have inflated opinions of themselves.
Now, I’m not sure if Warner practices voodoo like Kananga did or if he has a shark tank in his lair or if he’s trying to deal heroin under the guise of an American gangster. But I wouldn’t put it past him. I also think John Oliver would have nicer things to say about the antagonist from Live and Let Die than Warner.
Jerome Valcke/Le Chiffre
Jerome Valcke thinks he’s a big fish but deep down, he knows there are forces above him that pull the strings. Still, that didn’t stop Valcke from authorizing a $10 million transfer to ensure Russia would host the 2018 World Cup. Valcke claims it isn’t a bribe but we all know otherwise.
Meanwhile, Le Chiffre used a high-stakes poker game with a $10 million buy-in to finance the terrorist organization that employs him.
Some questions remain. Does Valcke weep blood? Does Vaclke have to use an inhaler? Does Le Chiffre have a preference for Budweiser? Is Sepp Blatter really Mr. White? Hmmm.
Chuck Blazer/Henry Gupta
Admittedly, these two don’t have a lot in common besides the fact they’re both American. Blazer is the “gentleman” who exposed FIFA’s corruption by admitting to accepting bribes with other FIFA executives to ensure South Africa would host the 2o1o World Cup. The New York Daily News reported that Blazer had become an informant for the FBI and the IRS after the agencies found a decade’s worth of unpaid taxes by Blazer. Oh yeah, Blazer is the man who owned a separate condo…FOR HIS CATS!
Gupta is the techno geek who helps Elliot Carver launch his multimedia news network in Tomorrow Never Dies.
The thing here is they look-alike. The beard, the roly-poly figure, the walrus-like features. Both could be Santa Claus at their respective Christmas parties. It’s a stretch but work with me people.
Jose Maria Marin/Francisco Scaramanga
Marin was the president of the Brazilian Football Confederation who oversaw the 2014 World Cup in his home country.
He’s a real prize. He has gone from pocketing a gold medal that was supposed to be given to the Corinthians goalie after the Brazilian club won the Copa Sao Paulo de Futebol Junior (Sao Paulo Youth Football Cup), to criticizing a murdered Brazilian journalist who was tortured by a political ally of Marin’s to being arrested in this FIFA scandal.
Francisco Scaramanga was an overworked, underpaid assassin for the KGB until he went independent and became the best and highest paid hitman who uses specifically made golden bullets in The Man With The Golden Gun.
Scaramanga has some odd quirks to say the least. He has an undersized man-servant named Nick Nack who is just as devious as his boss. Scaramanga lives well in a secret island hideaway, complete with a self-sufficient solar power plant he built off the coast of China. While no photograph exists, he does have a supernumerary nipple that in folklore means invincibility. Scaramanga also has a funhouse in which he invites “guests” to challenge him to a duel to the death.
Marin and Scaramanga will admit that science isn’t their strong point, they both take money for their own nefarious deeds. I could see Marin living very lavishly while others suffer as well. But I have a feeling he would charge more than $1 million to carry out a hit.
(RIP Sir Christopher Lee)
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