MOSCOW (AP) — Sepp Blatter got here to Moscow and noticed Vladimir Putin on the Kremlin, defying FIFA’s want that its suspended former president’s consult with to the International Cup would draw in little consideration.

Blatter says he went to peer Russia’s president after observing Portugal’s 1-Zero win over Morocco in Moscow on Wednesday — dressed in the laminate fan ID card required for all other people attending International Cup video games in Russia.

“We had small talks,” Blatter, who converses with Putin in German, informed journalists Thursday. “We spoke about soccer and the nice get started of the contest, the nice get started of the workforce.”

The 82-year-old Blatter is serving a six-year ban from reliable soccer tasks for monetary misconduct throughout this 17-year rule. The phrases of the ban, which runs till October 2021, supposed Blatter used to be saved cut loose his successor Gianni Infantino and different soccer officers at Luzhniki Stadium.

Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov declined to present main points of Blatter’s consult with, describing it as “a personal assembly.”

Pleasurable a long-standing private invitation from Putin to wait the International Cup, Blatter will trip to St. Petersburg to peer Brazil play Costa Rica on Friday.

Blatter stated it used to be “respectful” to be invited to the Kremlin in spite of being suspended from soccer. He used to be escorted to the presidential house via his former FIFA govt committee colleague Vitaly Mutko, who’s a deputy high minister and president of Russia’s soccer federation.

“I believe this is a respectful task and I used to be satisfied to fulfill him (Putin) within the Kremlin,” he stated. Blatter used to be FIFA president from 1998 till being suspended from place of business in October 2015 within the fallout from U.S. and Swiss federal investigations of global soccer officers.

Blatter’s presence in Russia is awkward and slightly embarrassing for recreation’s new management looking to rebuild its recognition after corruption-scarred years.

Lots of the govt committee participants who took phase in a December 2010 vote to select Russia and Qatar as long term International Cup votes had been investigated or suspended via FIFA’s ethics committee, or indicted via the U.S. Division of Justice.

Blatter, alternatively, instructed FIFA used to be no longer via his five-day consult with — his first public look outdoor Switzerland since a July 2015 shuttle to St. Petersburg for the International Cup qualifying draw.

“The president of FIFA used to be knowledgeable in my view via the president of the state right here that he invitations me. And he has stated ‘OK, not anything.’ So I do not believe they’re ,” he stated.

On the other hand, Blatter joked about his courting with Infantino, who’s from a neighboring the town in the similar Swiss area.

“I’ve an excessively particular courting with Gianni Infantino,” he stated, “it method we do not talk!”

Blatter used to be hosted Wednesday via Russian International Cup organizers and watched from a hospitality suite as Cristiano Ronaldo scored the profitable function.

“It’s just right to be a fan,” Blatter stated earlier than posing for pictures with the laminated Fan ID card.

Blatter has had well being scares since leaving place of business and obviously thrived at the consideration from global media and enthusiasts in Moscow.

“I used to be in a bath of other people as a result of they’ve known I used to be as soon as the president of FIFA,” he stated. “To are living those feelings for me used to be just right, to mention, ‘He’s nonetheless alive.” And right here I’m.”

Staying in a five-star resort in central Moscow, Blatter used to be greeted warmly after his media interviews within the reception house via former Netherlands global Clarence Seedorf.

FIFA has declined touch upon main points of Blatter’s consult with, announcing it took observe of his arrival.


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