The implementation of the reforms, which were approved by an overwhelming majority three weeks ago at the Extraordinary FIFA Congress, was the main topic during the two-day FIFA Executive Committee meeting – the last of its kind and the first chaired by FIFA President Gianni Infantino. On 9 and 10 May 2016, the new FIFA Council will convene for the first time ahead of the ordinary FIFA Congress in Mexico City.

During the meeting, the President presented his road map for restoring trust in FIFA, which he initiated on his first day in office. Key elements include: optimising FIFA’s administration, enhancing and modernising football development efforts, renewing the focus on women’s football, and engaging with FIFA’s commercial partners.

“Today ends my third week as FIFA’s President. I’ve been tremendously energised by what I have seen, heard and experienced over the last 21 days. Football is at the heart of FIFA and this is reflected in all of our priorities set for the coming months. The Executive Committee decisions this week ensure that we now move from words to actions. I am sure that with the measures in place, and those to be rolled out in the near-term, we can not only restore FIFA’s image but also ensure that the world will be proud of FIFA,” said FIFA President Infantino.

Putting the reforms into effect

A new recruitment policy for FIFA staff will be established with a focus on diversity and gender equality. In addition, exchange programmes with member associations and confederations will be introduced to build upon FIFA’s knowledge transfer process. Furthermore, the deadline to elect the new additional Council members was set as 30 September 2016 at the latest, in accordance with the FIFA Statutes and the Governance Regulations.

Wanda Group becomes new FIFA Partner

The Wanda Group is the first Chinese company to sign up as a FIFA Partner up to and including the 2030 FIFA World Cup™. Through their partnership, the Wanda Group will engage in numerous initiatives, with a strong focus towards grassroots football development in China PR, the Asian region and beyond.

Support for Request for Restitution

The Executive Committee also expressed its support for the Request for Restitution made by FIFA on Wednesday to reclaim funds diverted from the football community from those defendants who have been convicted.

New financial targets set

On day one of the meeting, the Executive Committee approved FIFA’s Financial and Governance Report 2015.  The report reflects the spirit of the reforms approved at the Extraordinary Congress in February by its greater transparency, particularly regarding the disclosure of the compensation of committee members and key management personnel. Furthermore, new financial targets have been set to meet FIFA’s adjusted priorities, especially for football development, while the organisation will continue to look at ways to further optimise its budget.

FIFA Confederations Cup 2017 and 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™

The Executive Committee ratified the assignment of kick-off times to the respective matches for the 2018 FIFA World Cup™ and the FIFA Confederations Cup. The Executive Committee also welcomed the progress made in the preparation for the two major football events in Russia.

IFAB matters

Following the recent decision by The IFAB to allow experimentation with a fourth substitution in extra time, the FIFA Executive Committee agreed for such experiments to be conducted this year at the Olympic Football Tournaments, the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Papua New Guinea and the FIFA Club World Cup Japan.

Medical equipment for Papua New Guinea

With regards to the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Papua New Guinea 2016, the Executive Committee decided to provide the LOC with additional medical equipment which, after the competition, will be distributed to the regional football associations to help to improve the medical care of football players.

Member association matters

The Executive Committee also decided:

·         to send a letter to the Greek authorities signed jointly by FIFA and UEFA requesting that they reverse the decision to cancel the Greek Cup within two weeks since this decision appeared to be disproportionate. In case of non-compliance, the relevant FIFA bodies would consider sanctions;

·         to extend the mandate of the Normalisation Committee of the Football Association of Maldives (FAM) to 31 May 2016 and approve the appointment of two new members, Mr Bassam Adeel Jaleel and Ms Fathimath Nasma Niyaz. Failure to revise the statutes as approved by FIFA and the AFC and to hold elections accordingly within the new deadline would lead to the automatic suspension of the FAM;

·         to give the Puerto Rican Football Association a final deadline of 30 June 2016 to adopt new statutes;

·         to give the Football Association of Zambia until 30 September 2016 to adopt its new statutes.

Women’s international match calendar

·         The international match calendar for 2017 was approved.

Solidarity fund

·         FIFA will support the Dominica Football Association and the Fiji Football Association in reconstructing the footballing infrastructure that was severely damaged by tropical storms.