Prince Ali, who serves as vice-president of FIFA for Asia in addition to his roles as president of the Jordan Football Association (JFA) and Asian Football Confederation (AFC) vice president, is to face Blatter and Jerome Champagne – the world governing body’s former director of international relations – in the presidential elections on May 29.
The 39-year-old announced his decision on Tuesday, although his reasons for doing so have been immediately questioned by Champagne.
Blatter is looking to win a fifth term in office, however, Prince Ali’s decision to stand has already received approval from UEFA president Michel Platini.
And Wilkins, set to lead Jordan at this month’s Asian Cup in Australia, believes Prince Ali has what it takes to step up to the highest office in football.
“I’ve been involved with Prince Ali now for five months, an upstanding young man, I’ve got to say a really, really nice young man,” Wilkins said.
“This is right for him, it’s right to put world football back on his tracks, and he’s the man.
“He’s very positive, he’s very straight, he’s down the line with what he says, he does.
“He has worked miracles in Jordan with the young players and their footballing ability in Jordan and he works very, very hard to make sure the younger people have a nice infrastructure in which to work in.”
Wilkins concedes that taking on the 78-year-old Blatter represents a huge challenge for Prince Ali but feels he will get plenty of support from across the footballing world.
“It’s massive [challenging Blatter],” Wilkins added. “But when you have Prince Ali and you have a prince of a country that’s taking him on, he would have done his home homework and that’s the important bit.
“I support him, I think the English Premier League will support him, I think UEFA will support him. I think he has a massive backing before he goes in to challenge Blatter.
“It’s about time Blatter was challenged and I think everybody in world football is quite pleased that someone is now going to stand up and challenge this guy.”
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