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Burrell to focus on his businesses

Published:Thursday | June 4, 2015 | 12:00 AMAudley Boyd

CAPTAIN Horace Burrell has distanced himself from the current imbroglio that has engulfed international football.

The Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) president said, at this time, he will focus on his businesses rather than football, but pointed out that he will lend support to the man who has been thrust into the leadership of CONCACAF, Honduras' Alfredo Hawitt.

"I have a business to run and, at this time, my concentration is really (on that) ... Now, based on how the CONCACAF operates, it's a full-time job and my business is important," Burrell told The Gleaner on Tuesday night.

The JFF president was at the residence of the Chilean ambassador, Eduardo Bonilla, as he hosted a send-off for the Jamaica team, which will make a historical first-time appearance in the 2015 Copa America (South American football championship).

"That (business) is what puts food on my table and, therefore, I'm not thinking about anything (else) now. I wish everyone well, but I have to also think about my thing," said Burrell, CEO of The Captain's Bakery and Captain's Aviation Services.

"I think right now everything is up in the air and, as a football family, the entire fraternity needs to come together ... it is early days and, therefore, we should be thinking about healing of the family. Therefore, at this moment, I'm not thinking about any other thing apart from that - the healing, the healing process," he remarked.

On May 27, a day ahead of FIFA's annual congress, Swiss police raided a luxury hotel in Zurich, Switzerland, and arrested seven officials. They were among 14 indicted by the US' Federal Bureau of Investigations on bribery, vote-rigging and other corruption charges.

Future bidding processes

Swiss authorities also seized documents at FIFA's headquarters into the bidding process for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups in Qatar and Russia, respectively.

Among those indicted are former FIFA vice-president and CONCACAF boss Austin 'Jack' Warner and the man who took over those positions, Caymanian Jeff Webb.

Then on Monday, June 1, having been re-elected president to serve for a fifth consecutive four-year term only three days before, FIFA president Joseph 'Sepp' Blatter stunned the world by announcing his intention to step down.

Burrell a long-time CONCACAF vice-president and FIFA executive, who has close linkages with Blatter, Warner and Webb, said he had no fear he would be implicated in the current investigation.

"I have no such fear or any type of reservation," he said.

He added: "The sport is bigger than all of us and let us look forward to selecting an individual who the world will respect."