"I will work hard to renegotiate with FIFA, in hopes of avoiding potential sanctions. I believe that FIFA is not expecting it as well," Thohir stated at the President's Office, Jakarta, Friday, after being received by President Joko Widodo.
However, Thohir admitted that FIFA's letter that was addressed to Indonesia implied and indicated that the highest ruling authority in football was currently considering to impose sanctions on Indonesia.
The chairperson will conduct the negotiation after he receives the expected invitation from FIFA after it holds a FIFA Council meeting in the next few days.
"I am ready and currently waiting for FIFA's invitation after it holds the FIFA Council meeting in the next few days," he remarked.
Thohir explained that FIFA had earlier imposed a sanction on Indonesia in 2015 that banned Indonesian clubs and the national team from international competitions. He was keen to ensure that it did not recur, as that would present a major obstacle to the development of national football.
"Back then, I was no one. I was not a minister nor a PSSI official, but the president delegated me to lobby FIFA. I succeeded, as the sanction was ultimately revoked in 2016," he noted.
Earlier, FIFA had decided to drop Indonesia as the host of the 2023 U-20 World Cup on Wednesday (Mar 29) evening.
In the decision that was taken after FIFA President Gianni Infantino met Erick Thohir, FIFA mentioned "current circumstances" as the reason behind the step.
Prior to the decision, several regional leaders in Indonesia had expressed their refusal to welcome the U-20 Israeli football team to compete in the event.
The removal of Indonesia's hosting status has also practically removed its spot in the tournament, as it had not managed to qualify through regular qualification following its failure to reach the semifinal stage of the 2023 U-20 Asian Cup.
In addition, FIFA stated in its decision that a potential sanction may also be decided at a later stage.
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