ZURICH — Adding more shame to the beleaguered world governing body for soccer, an internal investigation has revealed that FIFA’s female executives regularly earn less than a quarter of the bribe money compared to their male counterparts.
“FIFA has made strides toward eliminating the gender payoff gap, but much more progress needs to be made,” the report concludes.
Paula Schmitt, who formerly served on the Executive Committee, says that while male members often received bank transfers of millions of dollars under the guise the money was for community projects in their home countries, the most she ever got was an envelope stuffed with Harrods gift cards.
“It’s truly sickening that in this day and age, some FIFA bosses are getting their palms greased considerably more simply because they were born with a penis,” she said.
However, Ashleigh Goodwin, a former vice president in the Asian Football Confederation, says that the situation for female FIFA executives has improved greatly since she served in the 1990s.
“Back then, getting a little ‘something-something’ to cast a vote for, say, Russia or Qatar to host the World Cup was only a dream for us,” she said. “It was understood that the only personal profiteering women execs could expect was by taking small cash bribes to make sure merchandising deals went to the right people. We’re talking 10, maybe 20 thousand dollars tops. It wasn’t worth the fear of getting caught.”
Current FIFA president Sepp Blatter says that the organization’s culture of discriminatory bribery “did not grow overnight,” but that he’s certain to see women earning as much in kickbacks as men by the end of his term. He also predicts that by 2024, FIFA will be led by a totally unscrupulous female president who will go on to be indicted by the U.S. Justice Department by as early as 2026.