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 By Mark Rodden

Michel Platini says it's not his destiny to be FIFA president

Michel Platini has conceded that it was not his destiny to become president of FIFA but he has vowed to continue his fight to clear his name.

Suspended UEFA president Platini, 60, and outgoing FIFA counterpart Sepp Blatter, 79, both had their bans from football reduced from eight to six years on Wednesday.


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The bans relate to a conflict of interest over a 2 million Swiss franc payment made by FIFA to Platini in 2011 that is also the subject of a Swiss criminal investigation.

Both Platini and Blatter plan to appeal the judgments handed down by FIFA's ethics committee at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

"I'm not going to kill myself," Platini told L'Equipe. "I'm not talking Lexomil [a medication to combat anxiety].

"My destiny wasn't to be president of FIFA but to be in the French team," he said. "I'm not a politician -- I'm a football man. And today I'm well.

"But I will fight until the end against injustice, in order to be cleared, because I've done absolutely nothing wrong."

Meanwhile, Blatter has said that he was banned from football because officials at the sport's world governing body did not want Platini to replace him.

"I slept well all the same because I wasn't expecting any better from this committee," Blatter told French radio station RTL. "Because for a while I've seen that there's been a type of plot at FIFA, first and foremost against Michel Platini so that he wouldn't be FIFA president... I find it sad.

"Yesterday I was very disappointed because the four judges are people who've accompanied me these last few years -- I accompanied them at FIFA.

"But above all it's without doubt about preventing Mr. Platini from being president of FIFA."

UEFA vice president Angel Maria Villar opened the extraordinary congress of UEFA backing Platini to get his FIFA ban overturned.

The congress is being held a day before Friday's FIFA presidential election. Platini was considered the favorite for the job before being banned.

Villar, the de facto acting UEFA president, said through a translator that "Michel Platini continues to work to defend himself to defend his innocence and honor ... I firmly believe and hope Michel will be back with us soon."


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