Paris, France: Sacked Fifa secretary general Jerome Valcke made a "direct threat" to Michel Platini immediately before the former Uefa president's suspension, a sports marketing consultant alleged on Friday.
Platini, 61, is banned from football for four years over a "disloyal payment" of two million Swiss francs ($2.2 million) that ex-Fifa president Sepp Blatter authorised from Fifa funds.
Valcke was banned for 10 years over misconduct regarding television deals and World Cup ticket sales.
Benny Alon, an Israeli-American sports marketing consultant and friend of Platini's, exposed Valcke's ticket dealings at a press conference in Zurich in September 2015.
He claims that beforehand, he was told by Platini's adviser, Kevin Lamour, that he had received "a direct threat from Jerome Valcke that if Michel did not stop the press conference, there will be some circumstances".
Alon proceeded with his press conference, which implicated Valcke in a scheme to sell World Cup tickets above face value and share the profits.
Days after the press conference, Swiss authorities announced that Platini was being investigated over the payment he received from Blatter in 2011.
It led Platini to abandon his bid for the Fifa presidency.
He was banned from football for eight years, later downgraded to six and then four years by a Fifa appeals committee and the Court of Arbitration for Sport respectively.
Alon told a press conference in Paris: "Somebody at Fifa decided that they did not want Michel Platini to be the next president of Fifa and they unfortunately used me to start the movement when Jerome Valcke called and threatened Michel."
Valcke, 55, was sacked by Fifa last January. He had his 12-year ban cut to 10 years by a Fifa appeals committee on Tuesday.
Valcke, Blatter and former deputy secretary general Marcus Kattner are also being investigated by Swiss authorities over claims they illegally gave themselves pay rises and huge bonuses.
Blatter is serving a six-year ban over the payment he made to Platini. Kattner was sacked by Fifa in May.
Separately, Alon's company, JB Sports Marketing (JBSM), has announced that it is suing Fifa for $40 million over non-delivery of ticket packages for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
Alon said that JBSM had lost 20 of its 21 clients after Fifa failed to provide agreed ticket pages for sale prior to the tournament.
A Fifa spokeswoman said any such lawsuit would be "entirely baseless and without merit" and that the organisation would "contest it vigorously".
Published Date: Jul 08, 2016 08:39 pm | Updated Date: Jul 08, 2016 08:39 pm