Sepp Blatter Re-Elected Fifa President At 65th Annual Congress

Sepp Blatter's Triumphant Re-Election As Fifa President

Europe has reacted with fury after Sepp Blatter, the controversial head of world football, was re-elected for a fifth time Friday evening.

The 79-year-old Swiss defeated Jordanian Prince Ali bin al-Hussein to retain his hold on the role of Fifa President.

Blatter emerges the victor

The two men endured over an hour-and-a-half's wait while the 209 football associations in attendance cast their ballot one-by-one, in the privacy of a voting booth.

Blatter secured 133 votes, 4 short of the majority he would have needed to win without a second-ballot, but Prince al-Hussein withdrew his candidacy after only winning 73 out of a possible 209 votes, making Blatter the winner by default.

Prince al-Hussein defeated after the vote

The result secured Blatter's place at the top table for a fifth consecutive term, making him the third longest serving Fifa President in the association's history.

His seventeen year tenure is expected to extend until at least May 2019, when he will once again be able to choose to stand for the Fifa presidency.

In his victory speech, Blatter said: "I thank you, you have accepted me for the next four years. I will be in command of this boat of Fifa. We will bring it back off shore.

"I take full responsibility to bring back Fifa. We can do it and I am convinced we can do it.

"We won’t touch the World Cup. I am a faithful man - God, Allah, whoever, they will help us to bring back this Fifa. At the end of my (four year) term, I will give Fifa to my successor. It will be robust.

"Now I am the president of everybody, I am the president of the whole Fifa.

"I like you. I like my job. I am not perfect. Nobody is perfect. Together we go. Let’s go Fifa! Let’s go Fifa!"

Speaking minutes after the Fifa president was re-installed to his post, Prince Ali explained his withdrawal, saying he didn't want the 73 associations that voted for him to "get into any more trouble".

But he did thank those who backed him, adding: "I just wanted to thank all of you. It’s been a wonderful journey. I want to especially thank all of you who were brave enough to vote for me."

The arena where countries sat waiting to be called

In the minutes after news broke that Blatter would remain at the helm of the global footballing body he has overseen for almost two decades, English FA Chairman Greg Dyke told reporters: "I cannot see Fifa reforming itself under Blatter - he's had 16 years to do it."

Blatter's win immediately prompted outrage from sports pundits and greats of the game, including former England striker Gary Lineker.

Michel Platini, the president of European football confederation Uefa, also issued a defiant statement after Blatter beat Ali - Europe's preferred candidate.

"I am proud that Uefa has defended and supported a movement for change at Fifa," Platini said.

"Change which in my opinion is crucial if this organization is to regain its credibility."

The UEFA boss reportedly sat still and did not applaud after Blatter's acceptance speech.

Platini and Prince Ali at the Fifa Congress

The 2015 Fifa Congress was dogged by controversy after high-ranking officials close to Blatter, including his Vice President Jeffrey Webb, were arrested in a dawn raid just days before by US officials as part of a suspected $150m bribery sting.

On its opening day, the event was riddled with high drama, as first protesters had to be removed by security, then police warned of a bomb scare, and finally intense last-minute negotiations over a plot to ban Israel from world football, all threatened to overshadow the day's events.

Sepp Blatter Wins


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