Sepp Blatter says he was close to death after being taken to hospital earlier this month

The Fifa president, who is facing a multi-year ban from football and is currently serving a 90-day provisional suspension, spent several days being treated for stress before being discharged from hospital a week and a half ago.

In his first interview since his release, the 79-year-old told Swiss broadcaster RTS: “I was close to dying. I was between the angels who were singing and the devil who was lighting the fire, but it was the angels who sang.

Sepp Blatter is currently suspended from Fifa

“The pressure was enormous. At some stage the body just says, ‘No, enough is enough’. But if you are strong psychologically, you can resist.”

In September, Swiss prosecutors opened a criminal case against Blatter over mismanagement and a suspicious £1.3 million payment made in 2011to Michel Platini, who also faces a multi-year ban.

Blatter was taken to hospital earlier this month

In excerpts from an interview to be aired on Wednesday, Blatter hailed the Uefa president as an “honest man”.

The payment made to Platini in 2011 is for work the Frenchman carried out a decade earlier.

Blatter added: “There is an agreement...even in the Fifa regulations that a contract can be made either in writing or orally. It is an oral contract, a contract of work.”

Blatter is pelted with money by comedian Lee Nelson

If Platini escapes a longer suspension than his own provisional 90-day ban, he could run to succeed Blatter as Fifa president in February.

On the question of whether or not Platini would make a good Fifa chief, Blatter said: “Yes.”

He added: “If he comes back, he will be elected.”

Blatter and Platini are running out of appeal options

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