“My passion for soccer is undiminished and it is time for me to explore new challenges within this wonderful sport,” Mr. Blazer said. “Running a governing body has been an incredibly fulfilling job, but there are so many other areas of the sport where as a senior executive, I will make a great impact.”
Mr. Blazer, 66, will end a 21-year tenure during which CONCACAF’s revenues increased from $140,000 to $40 million and it became one of the world’s most influential and prestigious football organizations, with 40 member countries, a roster of prestigious and well attended tournaments and a strong track record of enhancing the sport’s popularity and reach. He has also played a major role as a member of the Executive Committee of FIFA. He spearheaded a move to bring FIFA’s marketing and television rights in-house and was instrumental in securing the organization’s $425 million deal with Univision and ESPN for rights to the 2010 and 2014 World Cups. Mr. Blazer will retain his seat on the Executive Committee of FIFA, which he has held since 1997.
“Leading this organization during the last two decades of unprecedented growth and accomplishment has been a great honour and a tremendous challenge,” said Mr. Blazer. “Now, with CONCACAF’s 50th anniversary year coming to a close, the Champions League well established and the 2011 Gold Cup having exceeded all expectations, the timing will be right to devote myself to other opportunities in this great sport.”
U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati said “Chuck’s contributions to the sport over the last 30 years are unparalleled. All of us in CONCACAF owe him a great debt of gratitude for his sustained efforts in helping to take the sport to where it is today. There is no doubt that he will continue to make an impact in whatever role he chooses.”
Blazer commented, “In looking back at my years at CONCACAF, I have great satisfaction in having achieved all my objectives, including unprecedented revenues, new initiatives in competitions and modern technology in administration.”