In a sudden development that could encourage football in the US and Asia, the name of an Indian-American football official is doing the rounds as a potential successor to ousted FIFA president Sepp Blatter.
Sunil Gulati, an Allahabad-born Connecticut Indian and a Columbia University academic, is said to be among the contestants in the race for the post of FIFA chief following the resignation of Blatter after many officials were charged for corruption by the US law enforcement authorities.
In a statement, Gulati said the Blatter’s resignation “represents an exceptional and immediate opportunity for positive change within FIFA” and commended him “for making a decision that puts the football body and the sport we love above all other interests.”
Gulati is said to have voted against Blatter in last week’s FIFA election and the US soccer dispensation has broadly been against the Swiss soccer supremo. Gulati himself has been re-elected a record three times as the US Soccer Federation president.
Moreover, a number of US media agencies were reporting that Gulati could be a potentially strong contender to replace Blatter, but New York Times, which mentioned his name in the mix that included French great Michel Platini and former Manchester United CEO David Gill, said he was an outsider and stood little chance.