FIFA President Gianni Infantino and European Parliament (EP) President David Sassoli have agreed to organising a joint event next year with the objective to address critical social issues via football following a fruitful meeting held today in Brussels.
“We started a path at FIFA some years ago to invest football into the social side of things because we have a social responsibility and we take it very seriously. But we cannot do that alone, and this is why I’m very happy to be here today to team up with the European institutions in order to make sure that we can use football as a tool for social cohesion, for inclusion, for discussions about topics such as equality, discrimination, women’s rights, opportunities, free movement, health and climate. Those are all matters that concern football as well as general society, and this is why we have to work together. Next year we will work to organise an event to make sure that these messages can pass in a joint manner,” said the FIFA President.
“Football is not only a sport that involves many men and women but it also has a very important social role…We have had an exchange about possible initiatives that we might launch together. FIFA is very active in the social field, working in all continents, it looks as a beacon of social cohesion. It is very proactive for things like culture and respect. It has big roots in Europe but also has an impact on all continent. This is why everybody is looking at what FIFA does and what we can do together to promote these things in the world. The international federation would like to involve European institutions further in its work and we are very happy that this has come up because we would like also to work towards this renewal of FIFA,” said EP President Sassoli.
The two leaders also took this opportunity to discuss FIFA’s ongoing reform of the football transfer system. The FIFA President thanked his EP counterpart for the input of the institution and the open exchange in the current process to reform the transfer system initiated by FIFA in collaboration with all football stakeholders.
“I was also very happy to report on the work that FIFA has launched concerning the reform of the transfer system. We need to make sure the transfer system is transparent. We are working to implement the recommendations of the European Parliament and the European Commission and I am glad to feel the support of the European institution because this is something that we are doing together for the benefit of everyone, football and society,” concluded President Infantino.
“In the name of the European Parliament I would like to thank President Infantino and his team for their efforts towards greater transparency. Football is an important industry, especially in Europe, but like every economic activity it requires maximum transparency. The European Parliament has made important statements in the past about what needs to happen in the world of football and FIFA today is modernising, it is changing, it is looking to the future,” added the EP President.