FIFA Reforms: Good for Soccer, Great for the World

I know, I know...that's a pretty hefty subject line and I'm feeling a handful of eyes rolling back in their heads like "c'mon Erit, isn't that too much of a fluffy, full of BS statement? In some ways, YES and in some ways Hold On Your Judgement for Just One Sec and I'll explain.

A new FIFA President was voted in today in Zurich. It wasn't in the U.S. Headlines like if it were a new NFL, NBA or MLB Commissioner, but it was in every headline of the rest of the planet (I know this, I have the SkyNews app on my AppleTV). What was also reported was that FIFA voted to approve on ALL reforms which I include in an excerpt at the bottom.

It's pretty obvious why this is great for soccer. But why is this truly GREAT for the world? This is why: Soccer is THE world's most popular sport by far. Hopefully you know this by now. The governing body of the world's most popular sport made a very powerful and bold statement on some things like financial transparency, but THE most important humanitarian gesture they made in today's vote was that they are officially saying, very publicly,  the development of women's soccer AND women is very important.

This one gesture will be the first powerful domino to fall in a positive way towards all of the other Football Associations, corporations and countries who have neglected women's football and women around the world.

You might think to yourself, "Well, nothing is wrong with Women's Soccer. Look at all of the attention it gets." Not true whatsoever. The USWNT has it pretty great here in the U.S. but out of the other 211 Football Associations, women do not have it so great. They rarely get enough funding to practice or even compete and travel. Corporations don't pay attention to them and they rarely even get media coverage. Hard to imagine since names like Abby Wambach and Alex Morgan are household athletes by now.

The reforms are closer to having a positive impact on helping more women around the world through the development of soccer and beyond for women.

So today, FIFA took a step in the right direction not just for soccer, but for the world. Really.


Here's a great breakdown from BBC Sports:

What are the reforms?

Disclosure of salaries

This will happen on an annual basis for the Fifa president, all Fifa council members, the secretary general and relevant chairpersons of independent standing and judicial committees.

Presidents limited to three terms of four years

This applies to the Fifa president, Fifa council members and members of the audit and compliance committee and of the judicial bodies. Sepp Blatter served five terms as Fifa president dating back to 1998.

Separation of political and managerial functions

The elected Fifa council will replace the executive committee and will be responsible for setting the organisation's overall strategic direction. The general secretariat will oversee the operational and commercial actions needed to implement the strategy.

Promotion of women in football

A minimum of one female representative will be elected as a council member per confederation.

Human rights enshrined in Fifa statutes