Addressing press shortly after the sanction on Monday, the embattled Swiss insisted he had done no wrong, vowing “I’ll be back!”
Blatter insisted the FIFA Ethics Committee which banned him had no right to do so; stressing that it overstepped its bounds.
“This committee has no right to go against the president. The president of FIFA can only be released from his activities by the congress … otherwise you cannot elect another president,” Blatter argued.
An emotionally overwhelmed Blatter claimed that he had suddenly become the fall-guy for the FIFA corruption scandal, declaring himself sorry for everything.
“I am sorry that I am still somewhere a punching ball. I’m sorry that I’m, as president of FIFA, this punching ball. I’m sorry for football,” he said.
“I am sorry for the 400-plus FIFA members who work there. I’m sorry. I am sorry about how I am treated in this world of humanitarian qualities. I’m sorry for the Federation Internationale de Football Association.
“But I’m also sorry about me, how I’m treated in this world.”
Blatter, who spent a week in hospital in November, after which he said he had been close to death, said he was ready to use the Swiss legal system to win his battle.
“With my lawyer, I will use sporting justice to go forward immediately to the (FIFA) Appeal Committee, to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, also to the Swiss court for my rights as a Swiss citizen,” he said.
“I will fight for myself and I will fight for FIFA.”
Blatter was found guilty of ethics violations for a payment of 2 million Swiss francs from FIFA to European soccer President, Michel Platini, who was also banned for eight years.
Blatter said the money pertained to a “gentleman’s agreement” made with Platini in 1998. He conceded that it had been an error not to have registered it properly in the books, but said this was no justification for his ban.
“This has nothing to do with ethics. It is just about financial and administrative duties. There was an error but this was not something to do with the ethics regulations,” claimed the 79-year old Swiss who ran FIFA for 17 years.
“You cannot condemn somebody without valid reasons and now I am condemned to being suspended, and Mr Platini as well, so it is not finished. I will fight, and I hope Michel will do the same,” he stressed.
Just like Blatter, banned UEFA President, Michel Platini has vowed to appeal against his ban.
BY Olisemeka Obeche