Latin America

After Congress and the courts, Bukele looks to control football in El Salvador

Riding a wave of popularity, the provocative president now wants to change how the national association is run, risking severe sanctions from FIFA, the sport’s governing body

el salvador football
“El Salvador is with Bukele,” say fans during the national team’s Oct. 13 match against Mexico. Photo: Secretaría de Prensa de la Presidencia de la República de El Salvador

El Salvador President Nayib Bukele appears to enjoy the limelight. His high-profile social media style has made headlines across the world, through his conflicts with courts and opposition parties, adopting bitcoin as national currency, or ironically changing his Twitter bio to “Emperor of El Salvador.” Now, he is also making it into the sports pages by seeking to change how international football in the country is run.

Mr. Bukele, who often tweets during his national team’s competitive appearances, said that it might be time for the government to intervene in the national football federation after El Salvador’s defeat to...

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