New FIFA president Gianni Infantino wants players to become more involved in the running of the sport and has recommended a cautious approach to the use of technology.
“It’s important that the players are involved because they are the stars of soccer,” he said in an interview on FIFA’s website, one day after taking charge of the world soccer’s ruling body.
“They have to be involved in the decision-making process. We need to listen to the players, we need to listen to their voices, to their experience, to involve them in the activities we do.”
Infantino, elected on Friday to replace Sepp Blatter, has inherited an organization which has been plagued by scandals over the last year.
Several dozen soccer officials, including a number who held high-ranking FIFA positions at the time, have been indicted in the United States and Blatter himself has been banned for six years for ethics violations.
Infantino said the sport could not close its eyes to using technology to help referees but had to be careful about interrupting matches too much.
“It’s crucial to see what impact technology will have on the flow of the game,” he said.
“Soccer is a special game, it’s the most beautiful and most important sport in the world and we don’t have to kill soccer.
“If the flow of the game is guaranteed, then I think we need to see how technology can help the game, we have to start with tests sooner rather than later.”