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Former T&T footballer announces candidacy for FIFA preside

St.John's (Antigua): Former Trinidad and Tobago international David Nakhid has announced his candidacy for the position of president of world football's governing body FIFA.

Nakhid, who played 35 times for Trinidad and Tobago, made the announcement in a radio interview in Antigua on Wednesday, reports CMC.

He is currently travelling through the Caribbean region seeking to drum-up support for his campaign ahead of the elections carded for February 26, 2016, at the FIFA headquarters in Zurich, Switzerland.

"I've played in all the confederations that you can think off. I speak five or six languages. I have the academic background that is needed for FIFA, more so than any of the others that have put themselves forward," said Nakhid, who needs the support of at least five FIFA member associations to contest the elections.

"It's about votes. It's about securing nominations, the official nominations which requires five federations. We sincerely hope that we can really put someone from the Caribbean forward."

Nakhid, 51, a Trinidad and Tobago native, was the first from his country to play in European clubs playing from 1988 to 1995, in Switzerland, Belgium, and Greece.

He scored 20 goals over the span of four seasons with FC Grasshopper (Switzerland) and 12 goals in two years with Waregem (Belgium), where he was twice named Most Valuable Player for the club.

His campaign team includes veteran Trinidad and Tobago journalist Josanne Leonard.

"We are looking at the Caribbean and we're seeing a certain vacuum in leadership, especially with the turmoil that is taking place within FIFA,' said Nakhid.

He returned to the United States in the late 1990s where he played professionally for Major Lague Soccer (MLS) outfit New England Revolution.

"We've been looking at that over the last few months and we feel now is the time for someone to step up from this part of the world, in a positive light, very much different to what it has been before, and take us forward."

Nakhid is seeking to replace the 79-year-old Sepp Blatter of Switzerland who resigned amidst the recent FIFA corruption scandal, which saw various officials, including ex-TT football honcho Jack Warner, accused by the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) of wire fraud, racketeering and money laundering.

The Caribbean man aspiring for football's most powerful position will be coming up against midfield trio Michel Platini of France (the current European football's governing body UEFA president), legendary footballers Diego Maradona of Argentina and Zico of Brazil.

"When you look at the candidates mentioned, for a global position, there is no one mentioned from the Caribbean region because we don't see ourselves in that light," he said.

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