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FIFA candidate Van Praag questions 'strange' Fox TV deal

FIFA candidate Van Praag questions 'strange' deal extending Fox's World Cup rights to 2026

FIFA candidate Van Praag questions 'strange' Fox TV deal

VIENNA (AP) -- FIFA presidential candidate Michael van Praag says extending Fox's World Cup broadcast rights to 2026 was "very strange."

Van Praag says FIFA awarding the contract last month without inviting other American broadcasters to bid was "not something I would do."

The Dutch businessman tells reporters on the sidelines of UEFA's annual congress that "in 2015 that is not the way we work anymore."

The surprise deal extended Fox's 2018 and 2022 rights, which cost $425 million when FIFA planned a June-July 2022 tournament in Qatar. Adding the 2026 rights -- when the United States could host -- was seen as FIFA heading off possible legal action for switching to play in November-December.

Van Praag is among three opponents of longtime FIFA President Sepp Blatter in the May 29 election.