The USA’s recent World Cup qualifying win against Guatemala could be vacated by FIFA
on the grounds that the country violated the so-called “Chocolate Rule”, which takes its name from the infamous scandal in the Ivory Coast in the late ’90s that involved the country’s powerful chocolate barons colluding to rig matches and saw several referees killed in gangland style executions.
It’s unclear what this means for the USMNT at this point, but its World Cup bid is in serious jeopardy.
The country has 10 days to file an appeal or the matter will go to FIFA’s highest court – a three judge panel that convenes twice a year in Switzerland.
Czechoslovakia leveled similar allegations at Greece leading up to the 1990 World Cup which led to Greece retroactively forfeiting 3 games and kept them out of the tournament.
It was later revealed that two players that competed for Greece in qualifying matches against Cyprus and Albania were actually women.
Outspoken Guatemalan attorney Ignacio Ruiz, who lodged the complaint with FIFA on behalf of Guatemala, said there is irrefutable evidence that the United States violated FIFA’s rules.
“WE HAVE THE PROOF. BANK RECORDS. RECEIPTS. I HAVE PERSONALLY SEEN AN INVOICE FOR A $240,000 DOG.”
FIFA, still reeling from its own bribery and corruption scandals, had no choice but to take a hard line on the United States.
Prince Abdul Al-Hashimiyah, who is seventh in line to the throne in the Kingdom of Jordan and a well known power broker within FIFA, had this to say about FIFA’s ongoing investigation,
“THE EVIDENCE IS STILL UNDER REVIEW, OF COURSE. IT IS NOT FOR ME WHO TO SAY WHO IS AT FAULT IN THESE MATTERS BUT IT IS OUR UNDERSTANDING THAT A FORMAL APPEAL IS IN THE PROCESS OF BEING SUBMITTED.”
Prince Abdul Al-Hashimiyah
The United States Soccer Federation has yet to publicly comment and the organization has imposed a media blackout on its players.
Wyndham Hotels Group and Marriott International, the two largest hotel chains in the world, have quietly begun issuing refunds for select US customers who booked World Cup accommodations in Moscow and Novosibirsk.
USMNT coach Jürgen Klinsmann missed a scheduled appearance at a fundraiser Thursday.
Journalists have been camped outside his Newport Beach home that was recently put on the market but neighbors say that no one has been home in weeks.