Posted: Tue January 29, 2013 12:08PM; Updated: Tue January 29, 2013 12:08PM

Michel Platini defends voting for Qatar World Cup bid

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Michel Platini
Michel Platini: "I reserve the right to sue anyone who questions my integrity in this vote.''
Lai Seng Sin/AP

NYON, Switzerland (AP) -- FIFA vice president Michel Platini has defended his decision to vote for Qatar as 2022 World Cup host after a magazine in his native France alleged collusion among state and football leaders.

Platini says in a statement "I reserve the right to sue anyone who questions my integrity in this vote.''

France Football magazine published a 15-page article Tuesday titled "Le Qatargate,'' which detailed a November 2010 dinner in Paris involving then-President Nicolas Sarkozy, Platini and Qatar's crown prince.

The magazine suggests Sarkozy pressured Platini for political reasons to switch allegiance from the United States bid to Qatar in the FIFA vote nine days later.

Platini says Sarkozy "would never have allowed himself to ask me to vote for Qatar 2022 because he knows that I am my own man.''

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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