sport

No challenge from Platini

UEFA president Michel Platini will not run against Sepp Blatter for the FIFA presidency.

The 59-year-old confirmed to UEFA delegates in Monaco that he had decided against standing for the FIFA post as he wants to continue his work as head of European football's ruling body.

Platini, who will formally announce his decsion at a press conference later this morning, confirmed: "This is the decision I have made. It is about what I want to do with UEFA."

European FIFA executive committee member Michel D'Hooghe welcomed Platini's decision not to enter a contest against Blatter.

"It was a very positive message - he said he would like to continue as UEFA president and I am pleased that it means that this time there will be no battle between FIFA and UEFA," said D'Hooghe.

The former France international Platini was once a loyal supporter of Blatter's but believes the Swiss has reneged on his public promise not to stand for another term.

Blatter, who is 78 and has led FIFA since 1998, pledged to fight for a fifth term after previously promising UEFA he would step aside in 2015.

Platini said in June: "In the future I won't support Blatter anymore. I've told him that. I think that FIFA needs a breath of fresh air.

"In 2011 he asked for our (UEFA'S) support and he told us it was his last term."

Five of FIFA's six continental bodies have already announced their support for Blatter, only Europe has publicly opposed him.