MOSCOW, December 21. /TASS/. The previously suspended FIFA and UEFA presidents, Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini respectively, did not deserve such harsh penalty on Monday, when they were both handed by FIFA’s Ethic Committee an eight-year suspension from all domestic and international football activities, Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko told TASS.
"It is very difficult for me to estimate this decision," Mutko, who is also the president of the Russian Football Union and a member of the FIFA Executive Committee, said in an interview with TASS.
"There is an investigation, case materials and an opinion, which we have not studied yet," Mutko said. "We set up the FIFA Ethics Committee on our own and it is independent. There is a decision-making procedure and there is a procedure to file an appeal."
"I can only express my regret over the current developments," he said. "Both of the executives did a lot for the development of the world football. Solid reasons are required to ban from football for eight years. I believe that neither of them deserved it. But I reiterate that it is difficult for me personally to give estimations, as we are not familiar with the core essence of the case."