Media reports allegedly claiming Germany’s bid to host the 2006 World Cup was successful due to a slush fund set up by the German bid committee. German football legend Franz Beckenbauer finds himself in the centre of the controversy.
Important upper-level members of the bid committee including legendary German footballer Franz Beckenbauer, Current DFB President Wolfgang Niersbach, knew all of these and also involved in the matter, reports German weekly magazine Der Spiegel.
More than 10 million Swiss francs were slashed to the World Cup bid committee. Former Adidas boss Robert Louis-Dreyfus bribed four Asian members of the Fifa executive committee just ahead of the vote on the 2006 World Cup host country in 2000.
Germany finally managed to win the bid beating South Africa by 12 votes to 11.
Reports saying, the money was allegedly paid back to then Adidas Chief Louis-Dreyfus by a payment of staggering €6.7 million from the 2006 World Cup organizing committee to a Fifa account of Geneva, supposedly for a gala event in Berlin Olympic stadium which was later cancelled due to some unknown reasons.
Now the true facts arising from an investigative reporting which suggests the money was actually transferred to another Swiss account of Dreyfus.
Although the DFB clarified in a press release Friday that they are already investigating the 2006 World Cup bid after a storm of corruption allegations engulfed Fifa in February this year.
“During these checks, the DFB found no evidence of irregularities. Neither was there any evidence that the votes of delegates in relation to the application process were bought,” the statement says.
If there had been a payment of €6.7 million from the 2006 World Cup organizing committee to Fifa, it may have been transferred for some other purposes than intended, “the payment had nothing to do with the awarding of the World Cup that took place five years before.”
The German Football Association is now saying they will try to get the money back from Fifa as soon as possible.
In response to questions from Der Spiegel the DFB also clarified, neither Beckenbauer nor other DFB high-rank officials are allegedly involved in the bribery incident.
In June 2014 also, Beckenbauer was provisionally banned by FIFA for 90 days for refusing to co-operate with an investigation carried out over the allocation of 2018 Russia World Cup and 2022 Qatar World Cup.
From the three surviving delegates who are facing the bribery allegation during the 2006 bid campaign, two didn’t respond to requests for any comment and another one, South Korea’s Chung Mong-Joon simply said the questions were not worth answering.