New England Soccer Today

Davies Hopes FIFA Arrests Bring Transparency

Photo credit: Chris Aduama/

Photo credit: Chris Aduama/

FOXBOROUGH. Mass. – Prior to Wednesday’s training, Charlie Davies had only seen some of the headlines about the arrests of FIFA officials in Zurich, but he knows that there could be far-reaching consequences.

“I’m not too sure of what’s been going on,” Davies said. “So I guess this will only make things clear for everyone else to see.”

According to reports, Swiss authorities conducted an early-morning raid that resulted in the arrests of seven FIFA officials, including Jeffrey Webb, the head of CONCACAF. The charges, which include corruption, racketeering and extortion, were backed by an FBI investigation into the organization.

On Wednesday, the U.S. Justice Department conducted a press conference announcing the charges. Acting U.S. Attorney Kelly T. Currie of the Eastern District of New York said that Webb, “used his position of trust to solicit bribes from sports marketing executives.”

Currie also said that the investigation is “only the beginning of our work.”

U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch also told reporters that the investigation is also honing in on the last FIFA election.

“The indictment also alleges that corruption and bribery extended to the 2011 presidential FIFA election, and to agreements regarding sponsorship of the Brazilian national soccer team by a major U.S. sportswear company,” said Lynch.

On Wednesday, the U.S. Soccer Federation, which is a member of FIFA, released a statement in light of the investigation.

“The United States Soccer Federation firmly believes there is no higher priority, and nothing more important, than protecting the integrity of our game,” read the statement. “We are committed to the highest ethical standards and business practices, and we will continue to encourage CONCACAF and FIFA to promote the same values.

“Out of respect for the ongoing investigation, we will not speculate or comment further on this matter at this time.”

While the investigation is sure to uncover more details about the way FIFA has conducted business in the past, Davies hopes that it leads to greater transparency.

“All I can say is we’ll see how everything plays out,” Davies said. “Everybody wants justice, and for things to be run the right way. Hopefully, this helps.”

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