Following last week’s arrests of nearly a dozen top FIFA officials on charges of giving and receiving roughly $150 million in bribes, John Oliver gleefully revisited his takedown of FIFA and its head/asshole, Sepp Blatter.
Last year, ahead of the World Cup, Oliver focused on the ways in which Brazil was going to go to rack and ruin thanks to FIFA’s demands for the tournament. Now he can look back and confirm that it has. The second-most-expensive stadium in the world, which Brazil spent $550 million to build, hosted a few matches and has since sat empty, used mostly as a parking lot.
Although Oliver didn’t mention it—13 minutes isn’t nearly enough to list all of FIFA’s sins—other nine-figure World Cup stadiums have also been shut down due to structural issues or abandoned to squatters. (“I don’t see any World Cup legacy to Brazil except the debts we have inherited and the problems we now have,” sports reporter José Cruz told NPR.)
Meanwhile, FIFA has reelected Blatter even after the indictments of many of his lieutenants, and preparations for the next two disastrous World Cups rolls on. 1,200 migrant workers have died in Qatar since the country’s World Cup bid was announced in 2010, and by the time Qatar hosts in 2022, an estimated 4,000 additional deaths are expected, many related to stadium construction.
And the scumbags who profited from all of this are just laughing. Witness Jack Warner, the Trinidadian politician/ex-FIFA official who was seeing dancing and singing at a rally with supporters shortly after his arrest, and cited an Onion article to show that FIFA is great and generous.
All of which is to say that hardcore soccer fans like Oliver would like nothing more than to see Blatter excised from FIFA like a bad tumor. He’s even willing to drink a Budweiser and eat McDonald’s on camera if those sponsors will pull their support from the World Cup to push Blatter out.