BERLIN (Agencies): The president of the German Football Association (DFB) Reinhard Grindel confirmed on Tuesday that he had stepped down with immediate effect, ending three controversial years in charge. The 57-year-old has been under growing pressure following controversies culminating in a newspaper report on Monday that he had accepted the gift of a 6,000 Euro ($6,700) watch from Hryhoriy Surkis, a UEFA vice-president and honorary president of the Ukrainian football federation.
“I am stepping down from the position of DFB president, and I apologise for my less than exemplary behaviour regarding my acceptance of a watch,” said Grindel. Surkis sat alongside Grindel on the executive committee of European football’s governing body UEFA until last February. Yet Grindel denied that he had been given the watch for political reasons.