The president of world ­football's governing body has branded as racist critics of the controversial decision to award the 2022 World Cup to Qatar.

In a scathing attack, Fifa president Sepp Blatter said the accusations of corruption against the organisers were being made by those "plotting to destroy" the tournament.

Speaking in Sao Paulo ahead of Thursday's opening game of the Brazil World Cup, Mr Blatter said: "There is a sort of storm against Fifa relating to the Qatar World Cup. Sadly there's a great deal of discrimination and racism."

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Mr Blatter was addressing delegates of the African and Asian confederations at their extraordinary congresses ahead of Fifa's annual congress on Tuesday. The African congress also passed a resolution condemning what it called the UK media's racist attack on its officials.

There were fresh ­allegations about the award of the event Qatar at the weekend, and World Cup sponsor Sony has also expressed disquiet over the continued stories.

Without defining who "they" were, Mr Blatter told delegates: "They want to destroy us. They don't want to destroy football, but they want to destroy the institution [Fifa]."