No Joke: Ex-FIFA Official Defends Himself Using "The Onion"

By James O Malley on at

FIFA might be under fire, but it seems that its executives are fighting back against corruption charges. Former President of CONCACAF (that's the North American and Caribbean equivalent of UEFA) Jack Warner has posted a video to YouTube defending himself against the allegations. There's just one problem... one of the news stories he cites in his defence is from veteran satirists The Onion.

Warner, who is also a politician in his native Trinidad and Tobago, was arrested last week by the US Justice Department. But! Warner cries, it is all a massive conspiracy theory, as the US is just bitter about losing its 2022 World Cup bid. The 'proof' being this, umm, exclusive report on The Onion website, headlined "FIFA Frantically Announces 2015 Summer World Cup In United States".

According to the New York Times, Warner said that "The U.S. applied to hold the World Cup in 2022 and they lost the bid to Qatar — a small country, an Arabic country, a Muslim country” and that he could "understand the U.S. embarrassment" but that America should "take your losses like a man".

Apparently the video reaches a soaring conclusion where Warner laments: "Summer World Cup, 2015, from the very same organisation that they are accusing of being corrupt. That has to be double standards."

It seems he spotted his error though - the video was later taken down and re-posted (that's the one above) with the 62 seconds about the Onion article removed.

What an own goal. [New York Times]