Michel Zen-Ruffinen

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Michel Zen-Ruffinen (born April 24, 1959) served as the general secretary of FIFA, the international governing body of association football from 1998 to 2002. [1]

FIFA International governing body of association football

The Fédération Internationale de Football Association is an organization which describes itself as an international governing body of association football, fútsal, beach soccer, and eFootball. FIFA is responsible for the organization of football's major international tournaments, notably the World Cup which commenced in 1930 and the Women's World Cup which commenced in 1991.

Association football Team field sport

Association football, more commonly known as football or soccer, is a team sport played with a spherical ball between two teams of eleven players. It is played by 250 million players in over 200 countries and dependencies, making it the world's most popular sport. The game is played on a rectangular field called a pitch with a goal at each end. The object of the game is to score by moving the ball beyond the goal line into the opposing goal.

Zen-Ruffinen is a lawyer specializing in (sports law), [2] and has been a respected football referee. [3] [4] His career at FIFA career began in 1986, and he was subsequently appointed head of its legal department by Sepp Blatter, then general secretary of the Association. He was then appointed Blatter's deputy, and became president of FIFA. He has been nominated for the post of general secretary.

Sports law in the United States overlaps substantially with labor law, contract law, competition or antitrust law, and tort law. Issues like defamation and privacy rights are also integral aspects of sports law. This area of law was established as a separate and important entity only a few decades ago, coinciding with the rise of player-agents and increased media scrutiny of sports law topics.

In association football, the referee is the person responsible for enforcing the Laws of the Game during the course of a match. He or she is the final decision-making authority on all facts connected with play, and is the only official on the pitch with the authority to start and stop play and impose disciplinary action against players during a match. At most levels of play the referee is assisted by two assistant referees, who are empowered to advise the referee in certain situations such as the ball leaving play or infringements of the Laws of the Game occurring out of the view of the referee; however, the assistant referees' decisions are not binding and the referee has authority to overrule an assistant referee. At higher levels of play the referee may also be assisted by a fourth official who supervises the teams' technical areas and assists the referee with administrative tasks, and, at the very highest levels, additional assistant referees and/or video assistant referees.

Sepp Blatter 8th President of the International Federation of Association Football

Joseph "Sepp" Blatter is a Swiss football administrator who was the eighth President of the FIFA from 1998 to 2015. He is currently serving a six-year ban from participating in FIFA activities.

On May 3rd 2002, at a meeting of the Executive Committee of the Federation, Zen-Ruffinen presented a report which put forward serious accusations against President Blatter. [5] Five of the seven vice-presidents demanded that Blatter resign, but the Committee preferred that he submit a written explanation on all eight charges made against him. Soon, due to significant disagreements with FIFA leadership, Zen-Ruffinen was forced to leave his position. [6]

In 2007, he was appointed head of the Association of Football Agents (AFA). [7]

In 2015, he expressed his intentions to run for the FIFA post of president, but in the end decided not to run. [8]

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