Former UEFA president Michel Platini has vowed to return to football, labelling those who handed out his suspension ‘morons’.
The Frenchman and former FIFA president Sepp Blatter were investigated for corruption regarding the decision to award the 2022 World Cup to Qatar, among various other things.
Both were found guilty of a breach of ethics and were issued eight-year bans from football. FIFA’s appeals committee saw the sanction reduced to six years and Platini’s was then further reduced to four years following his appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).
However, Platini has continually insisted on his innocence and believes he has been the victim of a conspiracy to prevent him from becoming FIFA president.
“I'll come back. I do not know where, I do not know how, but I cannot stay on a suspension, even if it's a suspension made by morons,” Platini said to RTS.
“I was the victim of a form of conspiracy, absolutely, between the people of FIFA and the people of the Swiss Public Ministry. There was an agreement, a cordial agreement between the FIFA and the MPC to fend me [off]. I do not say it's a conspiracy of the Swiss state.”
Platini also suggested that current FIFA president Gianni Infantino, who the Frenchman sees as having profited from his woes, would prefer him not to return.
The former Juventus midfielder also questioned the authority of the sanction he was served.
“Infantino? He may not want me to come back,” Platini continued. “I never felt suspended, how can a private company can suspend someone from football?”
During his playing days, Platini won two Serie A titles, a Coppa Italia and a European Cup – among other accolades – with Juventus, the European Championships with France and also picked up three consecutive Ballons d’Or between 1983 and 1985.
He also managed the French national team for four years between 1988 and 1992, taking over in the midst of an ultimately unsuccessful 1990 World Cup qualifying campaign before qualifying for the 1992 European Championships on the back of a 19-game unbeaten run, but Les Bleus slumped to a shock first-round exit and he stepped down.