FIGC presidential candidate Carlo Tavecchio has apologised for comments last week.
Tavecchio is embroiled in a racism row over comments about immigration.
"It was an unfortunate comment during an off the cuff speech. I have said sorry one, two, 20 times," Tavecchio told Sky Sport Italia.
"My history in public and private shows that, without arrogance, few have done as much for football in Italy.
"I won't describe my history with Africa or Asia, but the rule that allowed 10,000 non-EU players to take part in an amateur club was passed by me a year ago.
"Previously there were rules meaning they had to have a father with a living wage or to have come here legally, but I changed it. I have been in Africa to set up football teams.
"I ended up on the front pages ahead of the war in Gaza and the Tour de France. I was unaccustomed to that.
"I want to create a project for young players, Federal academies with a web all over the country. It would allow 700,000 young players to be viewed and evaluated.
"Our own youngsters must be our strength, not South Americans or anywhere else."
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