How A Curmudgeonly Old Reporter Exposed The FIFA Scandal That Toppled Sepp Blatter

From The Washington Post:

For the past 15 years, Jennings has focused on the Federation Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), international soccer’s governing body. As other journalists were ball watching — reporting scorelines or writing player profiles — Jennings was digging into the dirty deals underpinning the world’s most popular game.

“Credit in this saga should go to the dogged obsession of a single reporter, Andrew Jennings,” the Guardian’s Simon Jenkins wrote last week, citing in particular Jennings’s BBC “Panorama” film called “The Beautiful Bung: Corruption and the World Cup.”

Now, after decades of threats, suspicions about tapped phones and intermittent paychecks, Jennings is being vindicated with every twist and turn in the FIFA scandal.

During a phone interview Tuesday morning with The Washington Post, he called FIFA President Sepp Blatter “a dead man walking.” Two hours later, Blatter announced he was stepping down, just days after being reelected.

“I know that they are criminal scum, and I’ve known it for years,” he said. “And that is a thoughtful summation. That is not an insult. That is not throwing about wild words.”

“These scum have stolen the people’s sport. They’ve stolen it, the cynical thieving bastards,” he said. “So, yes, it’s nice to see the fear on their faces.”

There’s not much else to say besides that this guy is an international hero. He epitomizes the power of quality journalism. Rather than chase the easy money making stories he focused instead on stories that would make an actual difference no matter how long and arduous the process was. After reading this article praising his efforts it is evident that he was a large reason for the success of the US led investigation. Without him Sepp Blatter would still be in charge and us soccer fans would still be struggling under the weight of FIFA’s corruption. I’m not kidding when I say that this man deserves a Nobel Peace Prize. Without him FIFA and Sepp Blatter would still be strutting around like they are untouchable. It feels so good for me to know the  smug smile on Blatter’s face has been wiped away so I can only imagine how great it feels for Andrew Jennings.

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