London [England], Sept.14 : Aleksander Ceferin, the head of the Slovenian Football Association, on Wednesday replaced disgraced Michel Platini as the new president of UEFA, the European football's governing body.
Ceferin, who was elected as the seventh President of UEFA in Athens, defeated fellow candidate Michael van Praag with a significant margin.
The 48-year-old Slovanian was the frontrunner to replace banned former president Platini during the vote at an extraordinary congress in Athens.
He received a total of 42 votes from the 55 UEFA members to easily claim the required simple majority of 28.
Following his victory, Ceferin thanked the members for their support before admitting that with great honours come great responsibilities.
"Dear friends, thank for your fantastic support. It's a great honour but at the same time great responsibility. It means a lot to me, it means me and my family are very proud. My small and beautiful Slovenia is also very proud about it. Thank you very much," the Slovanian was quoted as saying by goal.com. The position of president was left void, after Platini declared his resignation from the post in May after failing to overturn his six-year ban from all football-related activity with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).
Platini, along with Sepp Blatter, initially received a ban of eight years in last December over claims that he had received a 'disloyal payment ' of 1.35 million pounds from the former FIFA president in 2011.
Both Platini and Blatter, however, refused all allegations levelled against them and had their bans reduced to six years by FIFA's Appeal Committee in February.
In May, the Lausanne-based court rejected the appeal filed by Platini to lift his six-year suspension, saying the payment was 'unfair' and a 'conflict of interests'.
The CAS, however, cut the suspension to four years and reduced Platini's fine from 80,000 Swiss francs to 60,000 Swiss francs.