The reason behind FIFA president Gianni Infantino’s appearance at Millwall v Norwich and his early departure has been explained.
The 52 year old, who was seen at pretty much every World Cup match in Qatar last summer, was spotted attending a second tier English football match on Saturday.
Millwall were taking on Norwich, with the crowd at the south London outfit being seen by 18,785 inside The Den — their largest since 1996.
GIANNI INFANTINO, THE FIFA PRESIDENT, IS AT THE DEN?! 😂😂 #Millwall pic.twitter.com/Urw5nEdi9l
— Jack Clarke (@jack_clarke) March 4, 2023
Gianni Infantino, the president of FIFA, was shown on the big screen, to the surprise of many considering there had been no news or announcement on his plans.
After a number of pictures were shared online, he began to be noticed by the rest of the world with the story starting from Saturday morning when the International Football Association Board (IFAB) convened for its 137th Annual General Meeting, something that Infantino had been present at, report The Athletic.
As he was in London to attend the meeting, Millwall officials had reported approached him at the conference about attending the game afterwards, to which he did.
Millwall organised security plans to ensure Infantino’s safe entry to the ground, arriving 25 minutes prior to the game and as can be seen in his Instagram reel further down this article, shook hands with a number of faces including Delia Smith, before sitting with Constantine Gonticas, the Millwall director.
It is a pleasure to welcome @FIFAcom president, Gianni Infantino, to The Den for today’s fixture…#Millwall pic.twitter.com/K7nSZq0zkt
— Millwall FC (@MillwallFC) March 4, 2023
Of all the games he went to in the area, some fans question why he went to that one in particular. There had been two Premier League matches at 3pm in London, with Arsenal welcoming Bournemouth at Emirates Stadium and Chelsea taking on Leeds at Stamford Bridge.
However, it makes sense that Millwall is the closest, and was the one less likely to cause havoc to his plans.
Infantino had to be elsewhere around 5pm, so left the game at half time (score at 1-1) with the final whistle coming in at 4.56pm.
Millwall were clearly thrilled to have had such a figure inside their ground.
He ended up missing three more goals including Gabriel Sara’s winner for the Canaries.
Hanley also missed a chance of redemption with a stoppage time goal-line clearance.
“I’d have loved to have seen 100 minutes (stoppage time) today,” said Millwall’s Gary Rowett, when asked about Infantino’s visit and IFAB’s conference.
This is what fans said as the reason behind FIFA president Gianni Infantino’s appearance at Millwall v Norwich is explained…
@Coops138: At least he can join in “no one likes me – I don’t care” 🎵
@SharpT_: Today, I feel hooligan
@pyrotechnic1979: I’m guessing the den is about to be renamed the south London pele stadium.
@andysfootyshirt: Today I feel that no one likes us…
@andy_cov93: Today I feel…. Green street
@StiofanEmary: “Today everyone is Millwalli”
@nickswatton: He’s clearly lost
Today I feel cockney
Today I feel pie and mash
Today I feel like a packet
Today I feel like a pint of nelson
@sg_miner21: Today, I feel stone island
@fullback03: Today I will be nutting someone
@martinsykeshaas: Well, I guess if everyone already hates you, you may as well go the whole hog.
@Moseley3_: “Today I feel, like I want a scrap”
@JohnWhitting12: It’s well known he’s a life long Millwall fan
@LovelyGeezer65: If people were pissed off about Qatar getting the World Cup. Just wait until you find out about Bermondsey getting the 2030 tournament. #Millwall #GianniInfantino
@kbscott4: Wants to know if he can adopt ‘no-one likes us we don’t care’ as FIFA’s motto.
@ryanthecreatr: World Cup 2034 to be played at Millwall, every single game. Half pitch games, one day tournament, straight knockouts.
@CanaryYellow96: “You only came to see the Norwich 🎶”
@craig_killett: Wanted to see some Brazilian magic didn’t he
@Gappy81: Was down the spoons at Surrey Quays beforehand.
@TwooterHead: Someone paint on his eyebrows?
@Jonashp99: My man knows the Championship is the most entertaining league in the world
@CFCDane_: This is so random
@DannyMfc99: We really are massive 😂😂
We get a sniff of the premier league and he turns up. If we don’t go up now we all know the reason… pic.twitter.com/NVrrNNsaIB
— JJ (@Llawllim41) March 4, 2023
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