Luis Figo has come out in support of suspended Uefa president Michel Platini, saying he “fully trusts” the former France international.
Platini is suspended for 90 days as Fifa’s Ethics Committee investigates a payment he received from world football’s governing body in 2011.
The three-time Ballon d’Or winner has claimed the transfer of £1.35 million was for work he undertook between 1998 and 2002 for FIFA, whose president Sepp Blatter is also suspended for 90 days.
Platini’s ban has seen him ruled out of the running to replace Blatter at next year’s FIFA presidential elections, but Figo believes the Frenchman remains a credible alternative to the Swiss.
“My support is based on my personal convictions,” Figo, himself a candidate before withdrawing from a separate election earlier this year, told reporters.
“I think he supported me when I said I was running [for Fifa president] and I fully trust him and his ideas.
“A new generation is necessary to bring back the transparency and democracy that should exist in the organisation.”
Prince Ali bin al-Hussein, Sheikh Salman Bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa, Jerome Champagne, Gianni Infantino and Tokyo Sexwale are now the five candidates in the running to replace Blatter next February.