US Soccer president Sunil Gulati elected to FIFA Executive Committee in CONCACAF vote

Sunil Gulati, US Soccer (August 2011)

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They were calling it the "clásico personal" in the Mexican media and the USA won.

At the CONCACAF Congress in Panama City on Friday, U.S. Soccer Federation president Sunil Gulati was elected to the FIFA Executive Committee, beating out Mexican federation president Justino Compeán in a tight vote that Reuters reports finished 18-17.

Gulati takes over the seat occupied since 1997 by fellow American Chuck Blazer, the former CONCACAF general secretary who departed CONCACAF at the end of 2011 and in February announced he would not seek reelection to the FIFA post.

"I am honored to have been chosen by my colleagues to be one of their representatives on the FIFA Executive Committee," said Gulati, who has served as president of U.S. Soccer since 2006 and will continue in the role. "The game is growing tremendously in our region both on and off the field, and I hope to do my part to continue to expand the development of the game for both CONCACAF and FIFA."

Gulati will serve a four-year term and will be one of three CONCACAF representatives on the 24-person FIFA ExCo. CONCACAF president Jeffrey Webb (Cayman Islands) and Rafael Salguero (Guatemala) are the others.

The USSF president will be formally introduced to the FIFA board on May 31 in Mauritius.