[BERLIN] German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Wednesday hailed the shock resignation of world football boss Sepp Blatter as a step to help restore transparency in its corruption-tainted governing body Fifa.
"I think that for ... billions of football fans it is an important message for all of us who like football - and I, too, am a fan - that the world football organisation can be run according to the standards we wish for," she said.
The announcement by the 79-year-old Swiss official meant "that it will be more feasible to make the work of Fifa more transparent", said Ms Merkel at a joint press conference with visiting Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.
Mr Blatter resigned on Tuesday in a stunning capitulation to exultant critics as a US investigation reportedly draws closer to ensnaring the most powerful man in world sport, following a series of arrests of top Fifa officials.
Mr Blatter, who has ruled the world's richest and most powerful sporting federation for 17 years, won a fifth term in an election Friday, but said he would step down after renewed criticism of his reign and new corruption revelations about Fifa.