© Provided by AFP Football Federation Australia chairman Frank Lowy has admitted the country “never stood a chance” in bidding for the 2022 World Cup and denies it paid any bribes
Football Federation Australia chairman Frank Lowy admitted Tuesday the country “never stood a chance” in bidding for the 2022 World Cup and denied it paid any bribes.
Australia secured only one vote despite ploughing Aus$43 million (US$32 million) into its pitch. It was competing against the United States, Japan, South Korea and Qatar, which was controversially awarded the tournament.
“We never stood a chance,” he said in an interview with broadcaster Sky News, as FIFA grapples with two separate investigations by American and Swiss authorities into alleged rampant and long-running corruption within the organisation.
One of the probes is looking into the awarding of the 2018 and 2022 World Cups to Russia and Qatar.
“I’m not the best loser in the world. I have nightmares about all the work we did. And we didn’t get anywhere,” he added.
Lowy, the founder and head of global shopping centre empire Westfield, refused to say whether he believed Qatar secured the World Cup through corrupt payments.
“I don’t want to make any accusations I can’t prove,” he said.
“But awarding the World Cup to a country where it is 50-odd degrees during the games, I mean how would you think it was done?”
Lowy has himself come under pressure to explain how Aus$500,000 from Australia’s bid allegedly ended up in the pocket of Jack Warner, the former FIFA vice president and head of football’s governing body in North and…