Here’s the joke that has cost FIFA’s communications director, Walter De Gregorio, his job: “The FIFA president, secretary general and communications director are in a car. Who’s driving? Answer: The police.”
He was fired days after making the joke on Swiss television.
De Gregorio had been FIFA’s most visible public face since the wave of corruption and bribery allegations brought the organisation to its knees.
A FIFA statement said Gregorio has decided to “relinquish his office with immediate effect” but it is understood he has been fired on outgoing president Sepp Blatter’s orders.
The joke made headlines in the Swiss media but FIFA’s leaders were not amused. Blatter’s public relations advisor also criticised De Gregorio in an article, and after the communications director confronted the FIFA president he was shown the door.
A statement from FIFA said: “Walter De Gregorio has decided to relinquish his office with immediate effect as director of communications & public affairs.
“Mr De Gregorio joined FIFA on September 14, 2011 and will serve FIFA on a consultancy basis until the end of this year.
“His deputy Nicolas Maingot will resume the role ad interim.”