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Radmann: no bribery, just a contract to keep quiet

Chuck PenfoldFebruary 11, 2016

A close associate of Franz Beckenbauer has denied that Germany paid bribes as part of its bid to host the 2006 World Cup. However, Fedor Radmann also said that a contract with Jack Warner was meant to keep him quiet.

Deutschland Fedor Radmann und Franz Beckenbauer
Image: picture-alliance/dpa/U. Düren

Radmann, (pictured above, right) who was part of the Beckenbauer-led committee that secured the 2006 World Cup for Germany, said in comments published in Thursday's edition of the Hamburg-based newspaper "Die Welt," that Germany had paid no bribes.

"I am still saying, completely clearly: We didn't bribe anybody," Radmann said.

However, Radmann also used the interview to shed light on a document uncovered by a legal firm brought in to investigate alleged wrongdoing at the German football association (DFB). The document is alleged to be a contract stipulating that the committee would provide undefined benefits to Jack Warner, a former FIFA vice president, on whom the world governing body has imposed a lifetime ban for corruption.

"Back then, we just wanted to keep Jack Warner at arm's length," Radmann said. "It was clear to us that he would not vote for us... but we didn't want to have him as an enemy shortly before the allocation [of the right to host the World Cup]."

Radmann said he could "hardly remember" what was in the contract, the existence of which he also called into question. However, he told "Die Welt" that in the days before the 2006 World Cup was awarded to Germany it was possible that "a sort of contract to keep quiet" could have been drawn up.

'Didn't want Warner to work against us'

"Jack Warner was FIFA vice president, he was an important man and unbelievably influential," Radmann said. "We simply didn't want him to work against us. For this reason, we may have tried to quieten him."

Late last year, Beckenbauer (above, left) denied that there was anything untoward in the document in question, but he also said he didn't know what was in it, claiming that at that time, he blindly signed anything that was put in front of him.

The interview comes just days after the DFB issued a demand of payment of 6.7 million euros ($7.4 million) to Radmann, a move meant to prevent a statute of limitations from coming into play in connection with the ongoing corruption scandal surrounding the German FA.

The firm brought in by the DFB to investigate the alleged wrongdoing, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, is to report on its findings early next month.