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Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein confirms intention to run for FIFA president

Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein has confirmed he will run for FIFA president again, less than four months after losing to Sepp Blatter in the previous election.

Prince Ali appeared at the Soccerex conference in Manchester, England, earlier this week, where he hinted he might run, and launched another attack on UEFA president Michel Platini, asserting that the Frenchman was a Blatter "protege."

But on Wednesday he confirmed his intention to run.

The prince, who lost May's election to Blatter by 130 votes to 73, made the announcement in Jordan. He will face opposition from Platini, who supported him in the last campaign but is now the favourite to succeed Blatter, and Korea's Chung Mong-joon in the election on Feb. 26. Former Brazil star Zico has also declared his intention to run.

Prince Ali, son of the late King Hussein of Jordan, has said Platini represents "old FIFA" as he is a former protege of Blatter's. His speech also made pointed remarks that others had been afraid to challenge Blatter, who is stepping down after 17 years at the helm.

He said: "10 months ago, I was the only person who dared to challenge Mr. Blatter for the presidency of FIFA. I ran because I believe that FIFA needs change. And I had the courage to fight for change when others were afraid.

"I conceded that election. Not because I was not the best candidate but because others were using me to make room for themselves. They didn't have the guts to run, but I did. Ever since President Blatter promised his resignation just a few days later, they have been scrambling to secure the job for themselves.

"I didn't stand for election the first time to make way for others. This election should be about football and not personal ambition. I will not be a pawn for others. I cannot leave the field that I have cleared only to allow a flawed system to continue.''

The FIFA election is taking place with a backdrop of investigations into football-related corruption that has seen 18 people indicted by the U.S. Justice Department.

Ali added: "Since the last election, I have thought long and hard about how to reform FIFA. It will be a difficult task. We must overcome deep-seated corruption and political deal-making.

"But I was not brought up to walk away in the face of a tough fight. Nor have I been brought up to walk away from what I believe in or take the easy way out.

"This is about right and wrong. It's time for us to stand up for what we believe in.''

The prince also sent a message to FIFA's sponsors, promising their association would "no longer be a source of controversy and shame''.

He added: "We are grateful for your patience. Please see us through the last mile of our journey to make you proud.''

He also promised to dedicate himself to expanding the women's game, supporting referees, holding discussions on introducing new technologies and increasing the fight against match fixing.

Fourteen officials have been indicted by U.S. authorities as part of a wide-ranging investigation into bribery and financial wrongdoing, including some of Prince Ali's former FIFA executive committee colleagues.

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