Fifa preparing 'Football Marshall plan' to deal with coronavirus impact

Malik Ouzia
REUTERS

Fifa are preparing to use their vast cash reserves to launch a ‘Football Marshall plan’ to tackle the financial impacts of the coronavirus outbreak.

Football’s global governing body have $2.7 billion in the bank and are set to use some of that money to implement the kind of support fund that president Gianni Infantino first touted two weeks ago.

Clubs around the world are feeling the effects of the pandemic, which has forced many leagues and competitions into shutdown and frozen income streams.

A spokesperson for Fifa told Reuters that they were aware that there were "serious financial problems on account of the coronavirus outbreak."

"This threatens to disrupt and impair the ability of Fifa’s member associations and other football organisations such as leagues and clubs to develop, finance and run football activities at all levels of the game, including professional, non-professional, youth and grassroots.

(REUTERS)

"It is foreseen that in many parts of the world a considerable number of persons involved in football including both men and women players will be left in extremely difficult economic conditions."

The spokesperson added that due to FIFA's strong financial situation, the body has a duty to help those in need.

The exact format and details of this assistance have yet to be decided but this week will see further consultations with Fifa’s member associations, the continental confederations and other stakeholders.

The spokesperson said that while a number of issues about how to distribute resources and implement on the plan remain to be resolved, they aim to have a scheme "agreed and announced in the near future."

Infantino's 2016 election campaign included plans to distribute the organisation's resources. At the time he declared: "The money of Fifa is your money, it’s not the money of the Fifa president.”

Additional reporting by Reuters.