Lord Triesman helps to net £435K for Norwood


Former Football Association chairman Lord Triesman has explained his frustration and disappointment over England's failed World Cup 2018 bid and the chain of events which led to him leaving the FA.

Speaking at Norwood's annual property lunch he also shed more light on the allegations he made against Fifa, football's world governing body.

The event was attended by 600 people and raised £435,000.

Lord Triesman made headlines in May when he used parliamentary privilege at a select committee hearing to accuse four Fifa executive committee members of "improper and unethical" conduct.

Asked about the allegations, Lord Triesman said: "This was a story that was always going to come out. My hope is that we can see international football administration cleaned up.

"I thought there was very little chance that Fifa would look into any allegations at all."

He said Fifa needed a "significant clean up" and called on the current leaders to "stand aside and see a clean sweep across the organisation".

Lord Triesman was interviewed at the lunch by Five News presenter Matt Barbet. Asked about the infamous episode in which the FA gave Fifa members' wives luxury handbags during the World Cup bid, Lord Triesman said: "When I found out about the handbags I thought it was one of the most clumsy and ill-judged ideas in the whole bid."

He also discussed the episode which saw him leave the FA last year. Comments he made about rival World Cup bidders Spain and Russia were recorded and leaked to a Sunday newspaper by his former aide Melissa Jacobs.

Lord Triesman said: "The embarrassment was obvious, both to me and the World Cup bid. I concluded it wasn't sensible to continue. The curious thing of course is that a number of things that were said in the conversation turn out, with other people investigating, to have been pretty accurate."

There were words of support for his successor at the FA, David Bernstein, who Lord Triesman said was a "tremendously good guy, I wish him every success. He's a very good man, but if he's going to take on these big, powerful organisations he has to be prepared to fight his corner, and I hope he will do that."

A video of Norwood's work was shown, explaining the lengths to which the charity goes to help families. It featured parents of children with learning difficulties and highlighted Norwood services including its Buckets and Spades Lodge, which offers short-term respite care.

A football boot worn by Barcelona's Lionel Messi was sold for £3,000 during an auction, with a pair of tickets to see Take That at Wembley fetching £1,000.

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