Gianni Infantino meets the president of the national association of Côte d’Ivoire in Paris

  • FIFA President talks with Yacine Idriss Diallo

  • Diallo, elected in April, to rely on Forward Programme to develop football in the country

  • Other delegations expected in Paris over the coming days

The recently opened FIFA offices in Paris have become a popular venue for work, meetings and discussions for the 211 member associations of the governing body, and on Thursday 26 May, FIFA President Gianni Infantino hosted the president of the national association of Côte d’Ivoire, Yacine Idriss Diallo, in the French capital. "It was important for us after our election to come to the home of world football, not only to introduce ourselves but also to discuss future projects," Diallo explained after a lengthy discussion with President Infantino. "We spoke to him about football in Côte d’Ivoire and the various things that we are working on. It’s my impression that he took what we said on board."

Elected on 23 April of this year, Diallo’s main aim is to redress the crisis his country’s football finds itself in, relying in no small measure on aid from FIFA and the Forward Programme, which is designed to provide full and tailored support for each of the member associations.

"We got a visit from a FIFA delegation very soon after the election and we immediately began to put in place the foundations for a successful working relationship. FIFA is determined to support us in getting football in Côte d’Ivoire back on its feet, and we have decided to make our country a model of governance and quality in terms of managing the Forward project," the 61-year-old president said. "This office is here for the associations and enables them to come and meet FIFA,” he continued. “We are accustomed to travelling via the French capital, which makes it much easier to meet and to work together. "I’m convinced that FIFA’s presence here will enable more progress to be made in all of the projects of President Gianni Infantino, whose wish it is for football to be played throughout the world, by young men and women alike… In Côte d'Ivoire, we have decided to implement a veritable ‘Marshall Plan’ with FIFA’s help, and to ensure that football is played in all of our 12 regions and in the 12 leagues, across all age categories." In the coming days, representatives of a number of national associations from around the world will be meeting President Gianni Infantino in Paris.

PARIS, FRANCE – May 26: (L-R)  Côte D'Ivoire Football Federation guest, Côte D'Ivoire Football Federation President Yacine Diallo, FIFA President Gianni Infantino and Côte D'Ivoire Football Federation Vice-president Malick Tohé during FIFA President Gianni Infantino visit to Paris Office on May 26, 2022 in Paris, France. (Photo by Julien Hekimian/FIFA)