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With a population of just ,, Fiji is famous for punching above its weight in international rugby but remains a minnow in global soccer, its men's team a lowly th out of the nations in world rankings.
Still, Fijian football officials have beamed with pride this week with their youth team's debut appearance at the under World Cup tournament in New Zealand. The achievement in qualifying for the first time has raised hopes of a brighter future for the game in a tropical country long dependent on tourist dollars and foreign aid.
Our development funds are all dependent on FIFA funding.
We are very much dependent on FIFA, about 80 percent. But the year-old Swiss, who has run FIFA for nearly 20 years despite allegations of corruption from other people associated with the administration, remains determined to ride out the storm.
Blatter's confidence in his ability to do that will be boosted by the support countries like Fiji have shown in the wake of the bribery allegations which have plunged FIFA into its worst crisis in years. FIFA is helping quite a bit to the development of other countries and we support Blatter in that area.
Khan, a former member of FIFA's all-powerful executive committee and deputy chairman of its ethics committee, delivered a minute speech urging the rubber-stamp vote to go ahead.
Lawyer Khan, however, was disbarred by Fiji legal authorities for professional misconduct soon after the election and later stripped of his soccer roles.
Among the many accusations dogging the Qatari power-broker was that he improperly diverted funds from the program to projects in sympathetic nations to boost his influence.
Fiji, however, points to its under team as a sign of money well-spent.