Fifa doubles income in SA

World football body Fifa has doubled its income since 2006 by hosting the Soccer World Cup in South Africa, Fifa general secretary Jerome Valcke said yesterday.

World football body Fifa has doubled its income since 2006 by hosting the Soccer World Cup in South Africa, Fifa general secretary Jerome Valcke said yesterday.

"Commercially it has been a success," Valcke said at the launch of special courts dedicated to dealing with World Cup related crimes.

"In fact, we have increased our income by 50 percent since 2006 in Germany to 2010 in South Africa." Valcke said this money would be invested in football development.

He said 80 percent of countries in Africa "would not have football" if it were not for Fifa's funding.

"If we don't have money, it means football will collapse," Valcke said.

He said Fifa was criticised a lot for "taking over South Africa" and that it was "just about money".

"But it is to protect football," Valcke said.

He said none of Fifa's commercial partners decided to drop their support because the tournament was being held in Africa for the first time.

Valcke was confident that foreigners visiting South Africa during the tournament would be safe.

"I hope, definitely, that these courts will not have to work at all," he said.

A total of 56 special courts dedicated to dealing with 2010 Soccer World Cup offences started operating on May 24.

The courts were officially launched at a ceremony at the Randburg magistrate's court in Johannesburg yesterday. - Sapa

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