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Wednesday 1 February 2023 Dublin: 8°C
Peter Robinson/EMPICS Sport
# Der Kaiser
One of the greatest footballers of all time is facing huge questions about possible corruption
Franz Beckenbauer has been investigated by the German football association over the 2006 World Cup.

FRANZ BECKENBAUER IS under the spotlight regarding a suspect payment made to Fifa shortly after Germany was awarded the 2006 World Cup.

The iconic former player and coach was the head of the tournament’s organizing committee at the time and has been subject to scrutiny ever since news magazine Der Spiegel reported that he was a key figure in a slush fund that was set up to ensure Germany won the rights to host the competition.

It was alleged that money was channeled from the German bid team to Asia, in exchange for four votes.

Last month, the German football association (DFB) opened legal proceedings against Beckenbauer and brought in a law firm to conduct an internal investigation.

The findings were revealed today.

Germany Soccer FIFA Investigation AP / Press Association Images AP / Press Association Images / Press Association Images

At the centre of everything is a sum of 6.7m euro that passed from the German bid team to Fifa and that was declared, at the time, as ‘a contribution to a Fifa gala’. The gala never happened but the money was never repaid.

The investigators were told by Fifa that the money subsequently went through an account held by Robert Louis-Dreyfus, the former CEO of Adidas and who is reported to have run the slush fund.

Delving through the account history, investigators then found a payment of 6.7m euro to an account belonging to a Swiss law firm, which subsequently made money transfers to Beckenbauer totaling 10m Swiss francs.

Switzerland Soccer FIFA Bribery Probe Lai Seng Sin / AP/Press Association Images Sepp Blatter and Mohammed bin Hammam pictured together in 2009. Lai Seng Sin / AP/Press Association Images / AP/Press Association Images

Both amounts eventually ended up in the accounts of a Qatari company called Kemco Scaffholding – listed as being owned by Mohammed Bin Hammam – then the head of the Asian Football Confederation and a member of Fifa’s Executive Committee.

Bin Hammam has denied receiving the money.

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The investigation team concluded that it found no concrete evidence of vote-buying but that they couldn’t rule out that it happened.

They also revealed the ‘hurdles’ they faced in attempting to access various documents, including missing or deleted emails and key personnel who declined to be intereviewed, including disgraced former Fifa president Sepp Blatter.

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