The International Olympic Committee has said that FIFA should follow its example in pushing "painful" but necessary reforms. FIFA's corruption scandal was likened to one faced by the IOC over the 2002 winter games.
The president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Germany's Thomas Bach (pictured above), drew on the IOC's own experience with corruption scandals on Monday to encourage international world football's governing body FIFA to press ahead with "painful" reforms.
Holding up his own organization as an example to follow, Bach alluded to the IOC's ordeal following investigations into corruption allegations over the awarding of the 2002 Winter Games to Salt Lake City: "We know from our own experience that …putting everything on the desk can be a painful experience, but it is absolutely necessary to do this as we have seen from our own history."
Speaking on the sidelines of an IOC meeting in Lausanne, Switzerland, on Monday, Bach was however quick to stress that the size of the scandal plaguing FIFA was far greater than the one that engulfed the IOC and prompted wholesale reforms throughout the organization.
"The structure of FIFA is very different from the IOC and the difference in the scope is huge. There is almost no comparison of what happened with Salt Lake City and what is now at stake with regards to FIFA," Bach said.
Bach offered examples of the types of reforms the IOC had implemented, such as "introducing term limits, reducing the age limits, by having term limits not only for members but also members of the executive board and the president."
"One of the major steps in this reform [was] to have athletes electing their own representatives for the IOC executive board," Bach told the press, emphasizing the need to have all stakeholders involved in big decisions.
Niersbach's the man for FIFA's top job, says German Olympic committee
The German Olympic Sports Confederation (DOSB) head Alfons Hörmann also said in an interview on Monday that FIFA can learn from the IOC as it reels from the scandals and the departure of its long-time leader Sepp Blatter.
"At the IOC you can see superbly how you can regulate the issues…in order to regain credibility," Hörmann told German news agency DPA.
Hörmann even had a candidate in mind to replace Blatter: the leader of the German soccer association, the DFB, Wolfgang Niersbach.
"Is he capable and does he have the skills for it? You can answer this question clearly and crisply with a 'yes,' even throwing in an exclamation mark, too," Hörmann said.
When recently asked if he would seek to replace Blatter, Niersbach dodged the question, saying for now his priority remained with German fooball.
es/msh (AFP, dpa, Reuters)