FIFA “President for Life” Sepp Blatter (née September, hopefully) is an amazing man. But you probably already knew this, especially if you were one of the 13 people who saw the FIFA-financed blockbuster film United Passions, which acutely dissects Blatter’s amazing life from his virgin birth in a manger through the moment he saves humankind.
If it wasn’t for Blatter, international soccer on steroids, as we know it today, may not exist. Sponsors wouldn’t be driven to stab people in alleys to get a lucrative piece of real estate on an ad board (allegedly). French hero Zinedine Zidane (a hero to all except to members of France’s generally awful far-right National Front party) likely would’ve still head butted Italy’s Marco Materazzi back in 2006, but it probably would have been at a swanky restaurant instead of at the World Cup final. But thanks to Blatter, the savior of the world’s game, things closely resembling the aforementioned shenanigans are given a chance at life. Praise Blatter.
Arguably, if it wasn’t for Blatter, the global market for the world’s game wouldn’t be such a lucrative cash cow, attracting an assortment well-financed miscreants from around the world, drawn to opportunity and wire transfers. He made a poorly managed non-profit profitable, which was the catalyst for the robust secondary market for FIFA executive committee votes. Sepp Blatter, the man the world loves to hate, is a goddamn visionary. But you already knew that, even though it probably pains you to admit it.
The FIFA boss — who didn’t resign, as I’ve been saying since he resigned — has taken a merciless beating of late, likely due to frequent allegations about … well, let’s just call them misdeeds in governance and leadership. A lot of people think he belongs in a gulag.
The heat really turned up when the U.S. Department of Justice started handing out indictments to FIFA executives and known soccer people like hot cakes. An indictment for you. One for you. And you. And you. Here’s an indictment for you, my good man. It was only a matter of time until the global game’s President for Life would be dragged through the streets of Zurich by well-incomed Zurichians (WTF are people from Zurich called? *shrugs*) tired of their town’s good name being soiled by a stout, bald man who at times looks like a penguin’s stunt double, people say.
But so far, nothing concrete has materialized; nothing other than vague allegations of neglect and wrongdoing, and Jack Warner threats (that he since retracted because he knows “a thing called loyalty”). That’s not to suggest that trouble for Blatter isn’t around the corner, just that it hasn’t happened yet.
To ensure the “Blatter’s out here walking these streets” trend continues, the FIFA boss lawyered up, retaining Richard Cullen, Esq., a former U.S. federal prosecutor and chairman at one of those fancy-ass law firms that lists people named Wellington or Bradford, with Roman numerals to spare, on the company directory. That doesn’t mean he’s guilty of anything. It just means he has a lawyer who probably sits behind a massive mahogany desk and is on a lot of calls. Amazing people are entitled to legal representation, too. And Sepp Blatter is definitely amazing. In fact, I said so in the first sentence.
But the optics aren’t great. The lawyered-up man is still widely reviled by 90 percent of the world’s population. People who don’t even like soccer think that the portly executive is worse than Donald Trump. And as humans go, Trump is, admittedly, pretty horrendous. And Blatter hasn’t done much to dispel this cancerous narrative. He hasn’t put his cards on the table — the cinematic masterpiece United Passions aside — affirming to the world just how amazing he is. That is, until now.
Blatter broke his relative silence on the corruption allegations swirling around him in an interview with German magazine Bunte. The article, titled “I AM NOT CORRUPT,” is self-explanatory. Blatter reveals, in the exclusive interview, that he isn’t corrupt, satisfying millions of people who previously thought that hewas corrupt.
Here are some of the highlights. If you’re standing, you should probably sit down now.
“Those who accuse me of being corrupt, must prove it first,” he said. “But no one can, because I am not corrupt.”
Straight fire from Prez 4 Lyfe.
“But if someone says Blatter is corrupt because FIFA is corrupt, I can only shake my head. All those who say something without evidence should go to prison.”
Chances are, if you’re reading this, or send out tweets like the one above about Blatter being “corrupt as hell,” September is talking about you. So please wrap up whatever you’re doing and proceed directly to prison. Do not pass go.
Blatter’s words may sound like hyperbole, but the underlying point still stands: It’s a shame people question the game’s captain of industry so casually, after all the great opportunities he’s given to multinationals to sell more sugar water to starving African children who’d otherwise have to play soccer on an empty stomach until Madonna swoops in with adoption papers. Sepp Blatter is amazing and deserves more respect. But alas, humanity has no time for things that are amazing for five election cycles.
You may wonder how Blatter gets the strength to withstand this seemingly never-ending tsunami of vitriol. Well, Blatter is a devout man. A Catholic one, if those kind of details interest you. “My faith has given me strength during the last week,” he told Bunte. “I am a religious person and pray, too. I own a golden cross that has been blessed by Pope Francis. I believe I will go to heaven one day. But I believe there is no hell. I disagree with the Pope on that.”
Sepp Blatter doesn’t follow blindly. He is a leader, a visionary. Sepp Blatter is amazing. And innocent, according to Blatter. He also isn’t scared to confront the Pope on hot topics like hell. But you already knew that, because Sepp Blatter is an amazing man, destined for a sixth term as FIFA president. Only a crazy person would bet against such consistent excellence, excellence that’s in possession of a golden cross blessed by the greatest pope since 2013.