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FIFA president Sepp Blatter 'distressed' by news of linesman's death

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FIFA president Sepp Blatter insists that football is a "force for good", despite learning of the news that a Dutch linesman died after getting attacked by youth players.

FIFA president Sepp Blatter has expressed his "sadness" after hearing the news that a Dutch linesman lost his life following an assault during a youth match in Holland.

Richard Nieuwenhuizen was pronounced dead after he was punched and kicked by a number of Under-17 players from side Nieuw Sloten, who were playing Buitenboys on Sunday.

"I would like to express my sadness and distress on hearing of the death of assistant referee Richard Nieuwenhuizen," wrote Blatter. "I was deeply shocked to learn of this tragic incident.

"Football is a mirror of society and sadly, the same ills that afflict society, in this case violence, also manifest themselves in our game. Nevertheless, I remain convinced that football, through the example set by the tireless efforts of people like Mr Nieuwenhuizen, is a force for good, and we must continue use its positive example to educate people against these wrongs."

Three youth players involved in the incident have been charged with manslaughter.

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