Former basketball international and deputy Algerian Mustafa Beraf spoke out for criticizing the IOC’s organizing of the two-year Football World Cup in the 139th session, held on the eve of the opening of the Beijing Olympics, which he said “would cause considerable damage” and Risked the game”.
Referring to the “physical and moral consequences for football players who are not robots but humans”, he also condemned the widening of the “gap between women’s and men’s competitions”, as well as the saturation of the international sporting calendar.
If the IOC called for a “comprehensive consultation” on the FIFA project in mid-October, the interruption of the subject in the midst of the pre-Olympics is highly unusual, with concerns over seeing football encroaching upon the field of other sports.
On the agenda of this general meeting was not only the football calendar, but also the target of criticism raised by Mr Beraf and other speakers directly to FIFA boss Gianni Infantino, himself an IOC member.
“I ask you to put an end to this inconsistency with our Olympic values and our fundamental principles,” concluded the Algerian official, backed by Serbian Nenad Llovic and former South Korean Olympic table tennis champion Ryu Seung-min. Former French Olympic champion Guy Drutt in the 110m hurdles.
Nenad Lalovic, influential president of the Association of International Summer Olympic Sports Federations (ASOIF), asked, “FIFA should engage in dialogue with the international sporting community”, as the Summer Games will compete with the biennial World Cup.
Ruy Seung-min, vice-chairman of the IOC Athletes Commission, for his part outlined the “risk of burnout or serious injury”, while a World Cup is “something spectacular, in which you manage to participate. Once or twice in your Life. There comes a time when athletes and their reps have to stop.”
The biennial World Cup project has left the football world divided for months, with many of its players criticizing FIFA for its lack of consultation.
IOC President Thomas Bach admitted he would like to “discuss this with the FIFA President”. “But it is not possible because he canceled his visit to Beijing the day before yesterday,” he said. “If you agree, we will attempt to contact them once again, and we will pursue these comments.”