Media sources have learned that FIFA Executive Committee member Chuck "Americas' Hero" Blazer is chargiing that FIFA Vice President and CONCACAF President Jack Warner and FIFA Vice President and FIFA Presidential candidate Mohammad Bin Hammam met privately with every representative of the Caribbean Football Federation and offered each of them US$40,000 in cash in return for their vote in the June 1 election.
As posted by BigSoccer Legend "Golazo" in the comments thread earlier and emailed to me by half a dozen other guys who I now owe drinks and dinner to (but nothing more - I'm easy but I'm not cheap) international sports media - who are, like all of us, having a shamelessly splendid time with this story - there was very little homage paid to the "development project" fig leaf.
It was a simple cash on the barrelhead offer.
What's unknown is how many of them accepted, although since they were all going to vote for whoever Jack Warner told them to anyway, there's little doubt that anyone at all turned it down.
Meaning that, essentially, the whole bloody Caribbean Football Union is now guilty of gross violation of FIFA rules and will have to be expelled from office and permanently banned.
(Note: reports are pointing to "25 CFU members" and you may know that the CFU consists of 30 "countries". The difference is that only 25 of them are recognized by FIFA and they are the only ones who get a vote. You're welcome.)
Is this some fun shit or what? And we're still in Day One.
Blazer hired John Collins, a well known and widely respected former Federal prosecutor who, according to a statement, says:
“I interviewed a number of parties and collated a number of documents including sworn affidavits. I then passed the report to Fifa on Mr Blazer’s behalf.”
Not coincidentally, as pointed out by the Incomparable Stan Collins - no relation I assume, but who the hell knows? - Attorney Colllins is a member of FIFAs' LEGAL COMMITTEE.
In short, he's not someone Blazer picked because he has a great billboard ad about Mesothelioma.
Reports from those who have seen the complaint say that Collins/Blazer submitted affidavits from "more than one" CFU federation representative to whom an offer was made. Reportedly - and to their everlasting credit - Collins was approached by "a number" of CFU members themselves who were "outraged" at the offers.
We should all - including yours truly - keep that in mind the next time we try to lump all of these guys into the same bucket of slime.
Collins also handed FIFA signed affidavits from "several witnesses" who - how can Warner be this stupid? - were present in the room when cash offers were made.
To put it bluntly: Blazer has these bastards dead. Dead, dead, dead. FIFA simply cannot ignore, whitewash, brush off or pooh-pooh this. Bin Hammam is out. Warner is out.
But just to make sure that nobody gets too giddy over all this, let me remind you of the salient issue here:
Sepp Blatter wins. Hands down. Hitler did not flatten Poland any more effectively than Blatter has steamrolled Bin Hammam.
Say what you want about the old bastard - and we've all said plenty - but he's managed this one brilliantly. As usual.
For the record, both of these lying, cheating crooks have denied everything, although Warners' explanation is the best:
"I am not aware that I broke any rules".
Good luck with that Jack.
You thought you could play Blatter for a fool. He was convinced that you were behind him, and instead you were busily selling him out.
What's even more intriguing is this:
If Bin Hammam was willing to pay every CFU member - and now you know why the rest of CONCACAF was not invited to the meeting - 40 grand, and Bin Hammam got Jack Warner to help him push the money, then how much did Bin Hammam pay Warner?
Guesses start in the seven figures and go up. Quickly.
Warner was going to make a killing here, and he is so completely convinced that he is untouchable, that no one would dare mess with him that he didn't even insulate himself from the deals, something which he could have easily done.
But he wanted his CFU guys to give him credit for getting them that money. So typical.
All of which still leaves the question I asked this morning, which is simply this:
Why did Blazer do it?