Gianni Infantino the UEFA secretary general on Thursday picked up unanimous support for his FIFA presidency bid from the ten members of CONMEBOL, the governing body of South American football. Also on Thursday, Trinidad & Tobago endorsed Infantino. On Monday, the seven federations of Central American football announced their support.
Add those to an expected overwhelming majority of the 53 members in Europe and already Infantino is looking at about 70 of the 209 FIFA votes up for grabs when the presidential election is held in Zurich on Feb. 26.
A two-thirds majority is needed to win the election in the first round of voting. After that, a simple majority will do.
“I am honored to have the unanimous support of my colleagues at CONMEBOL and I’d like to thank them, along with colleagues from UNCAF, UEFA and the many other Football Associations that have declared their support for my candidacy and my vision to take FIFA and Football Forward,” Infantino said in a statement.
Infantino has emerged as one of the front-runners along with Asian Football Confederation President Sheikh Salman of Bahrain among the five candidates for the position.
Much could hinge on what comes out of an executive committee meeting of the Confederation of African Football, which is scheduled for Feb. 5 in Rwanda.
Currently, Sheikh Salman would appear to have the upper hand for Africa’s 54 votes, given that CAF signed a working agreement this month with the AFC.
The other three candidates for the top job in world football are former FIFA official Jerome Champagne of France, former FIFA vice president Prince Ali of Jordan and Tokyo Sexwale, a South African businessman.