UEFA president Lennart Johansson has promised a clampdown on football’s financial irregularities and match-fixing and will introduce stricter rules for players’ agents if re-elected as head of European football’s governing body.
The Swede reiterated his plan to work with European Union politicians, in direct conflict with Sepp Blatter, president of FIFA.
Johansson, who has held the post since 1990, is standing against former French player and coach Michel Platini in the January election.
In the wake of the scandals to hit the game in recent years, such as allegations of transfer “bungs” and match-fixing, Johansson said he would take measures to end what he described as “turbulent times”.
“We need to achieve better financial transparency in club football and work with the relevant authorities to take even more effective action on betting, match-fixing and doping,” he said in his election manifesto.
“I also want UEFA to put in place a new European-wide system of rules to regulate agents to end the abuses which have taken place in recent years.”
Johansson remains in dispute with both Blatter and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) over how sport should be governed in Europe.
UEFA are backing the EU-sponsored European Sports Review which advocates closer monitoring of sport in the EU including stricter cost controls by clubs. FIFA and the IOC do not support such a move.
On Wednesday, Blatter said football “needed to be extremely vigilant with regard to attempts by governments, as well as supranational government organisations, to control the most popular sport on earth”.
Johansson, however, said he wanted to put in place “agreements with national governments and the EU”.
“I will work harder than ever to see the main proposals (of the review) realised in my final term in office,” he said.