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Global Corruption Report: Sport

Global Corruption Report: Sport

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Ordinary people are losing faith in the people who run sport. Our recent poll of football fans show that the organisation that runs the sport, FIFA, does not represent them and is simply not trusted. Recent scandals in athletics and tennis only reinforce this.

From poor governance and match-fixing to bribery and money-laundering, the many faces of corruption threaten the values that attract billions of people to watch and engage in sport.

If we really want sport to be the basis for a better society, to be one of the pillars for human and social development, we need to rethink the rules of sports governance and their criteria of representation and accountability – and build something new, transparent and committed. – Raí Souza Vieira de Olivera, captain of the Brazilian 1994 World Cup winning team
► 69 per cent of fans have no confidence in FIFA.
►​ 50 per cent said that FIFA had a chance to restore its reputation.
► 43 per cent said the scandals are affecting how they enjoy football.
► 60 per cent would not choose any of the current candidates standing in the FIFA presidential election this week.

FIFA poll

Click here for the full results

The past decade has seen the business of sport become a target for corruption. But, if the proper safeguards are in place and the necessary oversight is introduced, sport can clean up its act.

When results – of games, of contests to host events or of elections to run sports bodies – are determined not by fair competition but by corruption, we feel betrayed. Cleaning up sport is therefore essential, not only for the good of the game but for the good of society as a whole. – Cobus de Swardt, Managing Director of Transparency International

The Global Corruption Report: Sport looks at what has gone so badly wrong and what can be done to fix it. It examines the structures of sport, presents examples of good and bad practice and provides a platform to the various voices in the multi-billion dollar business that sport has become: including the often overshadowed views of athletes and fans.


► governance
► major sporting events, including the Olympics and the World Cup
► match-fixing
► money, markets and private interests in football
► US college sports
► the role of participants in sport

Based on the report’s findings, Transparency International is putting forward a series of recommendations to governments, sports bodies and all participants on and off the field of play.


  • Sports organisations to be open about how they operate, the money they make and how they spend it.

  • Cities and countries who host major sporting events to ask their residents whether and how this should be done and to involve them in the planning.

  • Big events to ensure sufficient safeguards to stop corruption, human rights, labour and environmental abuses.

  • Sponsors to promote integrity and hold sports organisations to similar same standards of good governance, human rights, sustainable as they should apply to their supply chain.

  • Governments and intergovernmental organisations to hold sports organisations to account and demand greater transparency so that deals cannot be done behind closed doors, and the public can see how their money is being spent.

The report is a resource for all those interested in restoring trust in sport. We encourage international, regional and national sports organsiations, sponsors, local and national government, and international organisations to review its detailed recommendations and work together with supporters and the grassroots to #cleanupsports.

Extracts from the report can be found here. It includes articles from 60 experts and more than 15 country specific reports. 

For more information, contact:
Gareth Sweeney,
Chief Editor, Global Corruption Report

Material is properly credited to us as: TITLE © YEAR by Transparency International. Licensed under CC BY-ND 4.0

 Creative Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-ND 4.0)

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