Fifa vice-president Jack Warner has stepped up his criticism of England’s 2018 World Cup bid.
Warner is in England and will be holding talks with the country’s hierarchy including Football Association chairman Lord Triesman.
Warner was one of the guest speakers at the ‘Leaders of Football’ summit being held at Stamford Bridge.
Upon his entrance to the meeting, Warner was handed a promotional bag from Australia’s World Cup bid team – something which caused him further consternation.
“England has to believe that they have to improve themselves, I cannot understand why at this summit – there is not a booth for the English bid – I can’t understand why I got a bag from the Australian bid,” he told Sky Sports News.
“There is a level of complacency with the English leadership that is unpardonable, I thought they would have learnt from the 2006 process and not made the same mistakes – but that does not seem to be.
“If I tell them in secret then it is up to act up on it or not, but I make this public they will act upon it – if the vote took place now they would not win, six months from now but that might change.
“It is a long way away and they have time to improve – but they must do it quickly.”
Waner again stressed that England are not doing enough to promote themselves.
“They have to be aggressive, they have to use people like Beckham, he is not a great speaker, he has to be your Beckenbauer, your Platini,” he added.
“I feel England do not exploit their attributes. I would take Beckham and make him my ambassador in countries where people are going to vote.
“England’s attributes surpasses any other country. I would have been more aggressive in the market place.
“If I had the Premier League, Beckham and the Queen, there would have been many things I could have done for the people who are voting. I would have made them next-door neighbours to make them the first name of people’s lips.
“In Rio last week, the first name on people’s lips was Spain, then Russia. I have friends in England and know about the trauma of 2006 – I am saying if they do not get their act together they will lose. You have no divine right to anything – you have to earn it.”
Speaking on domestic football – Warner suggested action must be taken to bring in salary caps and quotas.
“Say what you want about free market but bottom line is the playing field is not level and other teams can and do find themselves left behind,” he added.
“A salary cap should be introduced to allow for a more level playing field among clubs. Otherwise, smaller clubs will never be able to compete with high-spending ones. Never.
“And we need quotas. Madrid should not be able to field a side without a Spanish player – neither should Liverpool without an English player. The clubs must take initiative.”