FIFA sponsor Visa calls for independent panel to find ways to reform soccer's governing body

MarketsAssociated Press

FIFA sponsor Visa Inc. is calling for an independent commission to be formed to clean up world soccer's scandal-ridden governing body.

The credit card company joined fellow sponsor Coca-Cola in asking for the commission to consist of "impartial leaders" to ensure the reforms are credible.

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FIFA is reeling from the indictment of 14 people — including two now-ousted vice presidents who were arrested in Zurich — in an American investigation into alleged racketeering, bribery and money laundering in soccer.

Visa CEO Charles Scharf said on the company's quarterly earnings call Thursday that FIFA's responses to the scandal "are wholly inadequate and continue to show its lack of awareness of the seriousness of the changes which are needed."

He said the company believes no meaningful progress can be made under FIFA's existing leadership.