Susic: UEFA should impose Bosnia solution

BELGRADE - Europe's football governing body UEFA should impose a solution that would lift Bosnia's suspension from Euro 2012, their coach Safet Susic said on Friday.

Susic spoke to Reuters by telephone after UEFA and FIFA suspended the Bosnian national team and clubs from international football after the country's football federation (NFSBiH) failed to adopt new statutes.

"I think UEFA should come up with a solution and impose it on the Bosnian Football Federation because there is absolutely no chance that the NFSBiH might find a way out of the present deadlock and get the job done," he said.

"These people are incapable of running the NFSBiH properly, although this situation is partly a result of political orders because Bosnia is an ethnically divided country where a dysfunctional system has now caught up with football."

Under the present NFSBiH statues, a Serb, a Croat and an ethnic Muslim take turns in running the body.

Susic said his players were the innocent victims of the suspension.

"Denying the players a chance to perform on the big stage through no fault of their own is like sending innocent people to prison," he said.

"We can only hope that UEFA and FIFA will show some level of understanding for our political situation and come up with a feasible model because, quite frankly, I don't see another way."


At a congress in Sarajevo on Tuesday, 28 of 53 NFSBiH deputies voted against instructions by FIFA and UEFA to replace the rotating three-man presidential system with one that would meet international standards.

The Bosnians are well placed to reach their first major tournament as an independent nation, having collected seven points from four games in the European championship's Group D after Saturday's 2-1 home win over Romania.

They are fourth in the group, five points behind leaders France and one behind Belarus and Albania but with a game in hand on all three.

"It would be a disaster to end the qualifiers by getting kicked out of the competition and it would affect not just the players and football, which is the only good and productive thing Bosnia has at the moment," Susic said.

"It would result in job losses because the soccer industry employs a considerable number of people."

Susic said he hoped to get support from Bosnia's rivals.

"I also hope the other teams in the group will stand up for us, especially leaders France who beat us at home and would probably have those three points taken away if we were to be expelled from the competition.

"Whether we qualify for next year's finals or not, all we want as a team is a fair chance to compete on the playing field but unfortunately it's not in our hands."