Football: FIFA president Gianni Infantino makes whirlwind stop in New Zealand

FIFA President Gianni Infantino's made a flying visit to Auckland putting on a charm offensive for New Zealand media.

The Swiss-Italian is here to keep an eye on Oceania Football's congress.

Infantino's stood shoulder to shoulder with Vladimir Putin, and schmoozed Donald Trump in the White House.

But on Saturday his job was to push the merits of his plans to expand the 2022 World Cup

"Because I want New Zealand to participate," Infantino quirked.

Oceania football's recent history hasn't been much of a laughing matter though.

Sunday's congress in Auckland was to elect a new Oceania Football President after David Chung was banned for corruption

"The time for abusing football for your own personal gain is over," Infantino stated.

While Infantino claims to have drained the swamp, his detractors say he's more interested in filling FIFA's coffers by turning the Qatar World Cup into a 48 team competition.

Infantino also has eyes on revamping the Club World Cup.

"The current Club World Cup is - can I say shit?"

Infantino was more diplomatic about New Zealand's chances of hosting the 2023 Women's World Cup.

I know that women's football is important in New Zealand - women's football is a priority for FIFA too."

But the president doesn't seem overly concerned that the world champion US women's team is suing its own national body for gender discrimination.

"Suing is part of the process," Infantino noted.

"In the past history there have been many cases involving men's football so I think maybe it's part of the development of the women's game."

And football's future development seems certain to be overseen by Infantino.

He'll run unopposed at FIFA's presidential elections in June


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