Mayor of London Boris Johnson has hit back at FIFA officials following their rejection of England's World Cup bid by withdrawing the offer of a free stay at the Dorchester Hotel during the 2012 Olympics. Instead he has pledged to put the 22 man committee up at his three bedroomed Chelsea residence.
Speaking in the aftermath of the news that the 2018 World Cup would be hosted by Russia Mayor Johnson defended his decision claiming that while he had promised lodgings for senior officials he had never guaranteed any rooms at the Dorchester.
"I may have mentioned the Dorchester as one of the possible options but I can only think my words have been misinterpreted - no promise was ever made. In the final analysis the decision was made to break new ground and host the delegation at a new up and coming venue, my West End pad."
There has been no shortage of media criticism following the venue announcement this week including question marks over Johnson's ability to house 22 grown men as well as allegations that the switch has been made for financial reasons.
"What people need to realise is that my flat will look very different come 2012. I'm ordering a sofa bed that will sleep two, perhaps three at a push and I have successfully trialled an inflatable matress in the spare bedroom. I'm also having a downstairs WC fitted so the venue will certainly be able to deal with the morning bathroom rush."
The measures are unlikely to satisfy FIFA however. Today an insider questioned whether the extension would be completed on time while criticising the proposed sleeping arrangements that would see FIFA president Sepp Blatter share a bed with Boris Johnson with Jack Warner forced to sleep in the bath.