Stung Blatter says sorry

Stung Blatter says sorry

“It hurts and I am still hurting because I couldn't envisage such a reaction,” the 75-year-old head of world soccer's governing body said in a BBC interview.

“When you have done something which was not totally correct, I can only say I am sorry for all those people affected by my declarations.”

Blatter sparked outrage, most notably in England where the FA is dealing with two high-profile racism allegations, when he suggested on Wednesday that incidents of racist abuse on the pitch should be settled with a handshake after the game.

His comments were criticised by players such as England defender Rio Ferdinand and former captain David Beckham and even brought a stinging rebuke from British Prime Minister David Cam­eron, who described them as “appalling.”

However, Blatter said he would not quit over the remarks which have provoked back page headlines in Britain's newspapers such as “Go Now Blatter” and “Now He Must Go.”
“I cannot resign,” Blatter said. “Why should I?
“When you are faced with a problem you have to face the problem. To leave would be totally unfair and not compatible with my fighting spirit, my character, my energy.”
The latest controversy surrounding the long-standing FIFA president erupted on Wednesday when in two separate television interviews he suggested racism in football was not a problem.
Beckham added his weight to the debate.
“I think the comments were appalling,” Beckham told an LA Galaxy news conference.
“I think a lot of people have said that. I don't think the comments were very good for this game...(racism) is still there and can't just be swept under the carpet.”