On Thursday afternoon it was announced that Walter de Gregorio – FIFA Director of Communications and Public Affairs – had stepped down with immediate effect.
It emerged soon after that he had been asked to leave by Sepp Blatter after telling a funny joke about the outgoing FIFA president, Jérôme Valcke and himself.
Considered one of Blatter’s top aides, Walter de Gregorio told the following joke on Swiss TV.
“Sepp Blatter, myself and Jérôme Valcke are in a car. Who’s driving?
Twelve FIFA official were arrested in Zurich recently and the FBI are trying to take down president Sepp Blatter amidst corruption allegations.
The 78 year old president is due to step down in December despite winning the recent FIFA election to stand for a fifth term.
Hearing DeGregorio fired after making joke on a Swiss TV. Q: FIFA president, gen sec + comms dir are in a car. Who's driving? A: The police
— Martyn Ziegler (@martynziegler) June 11, 2015
De Gregorio joke didn't help matters but root cause said to stem from criticism of him by pr guru close to Blatter. More @BBCSport soon.
— Richard Conway (@richard_conway) June 11, 2015