altTHE Scottish Government have claimed that FIFA should investigate claims from a Westminster Minister that they would back a united British football team for London 2012, a move that could jeopardise the participation of the four Home Countries in the 2010 World Cup.


The Scottish National Party call for the inquiry after 18 mainly Scottish Labour MPs signed an early day motion welcoming assurances given to Jim Murphy, the Scottish Secretary, by the world governing body saying that a British football team would not undermine Scotland's ability to compete in its own right in future tournaments.

Pete Wishart, SNP's spokesperson at Westminster, said: "FIFA's statutes are clear: they do not allow political intervention from Governments.


"But the Labour Government at Westminster is playing politics with the people's game by trying to force through a British Olympic football team with no regard for the views of the Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland football authorities or the fans of all four home nations, who are united in their opposition to this daft and dangerous idea.

"FIFA should launch an investigation into the interference of the British Government, including the activities of Jim Murphy.


"The Scottish Football Association and the Tartan Army have made their opposition to an under-23 British football team at London 2012 because of the unacceptable risk to our status as an independent football nation."


FIFA has a strong policy about Governments interferring in footballing matters and already this year has suspended Iraq and Poland because they believed that the Football Associations there were not independent.


If the Football Associations in the Home Countries were suspended they would not be able to fulfill their World Cup fixtures.

A spokesman for the Scottish FA said: "All along we have not wanted this matter to become a political party debate.

"This is a footballing decision which should be taken by football people."