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Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Official: Hold Qatar’s World Cup in the winter, or move the games elsewhere

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Another influential football official has added his voice to the chorus of Europeans saying it would be “impossible” for Qatar’s 2022 World Cup to be held in the summer.

Following a visit to Doha in June, Greg Dyke, the new chairman of the English Football Association, said yesterday that FIFA has two choices:

“They can move it either time-wise or to another location. I suspect either will end up in some sort of litigation. But then someone should have worked that out in 2010 when it was awarded.”

The remarks are a departure from the previous FA head’s position, that the Cup should not be moved because it affects the UK’s domestic league season.

They also came as a blow to the Premier League, which was “surprised and disappointed” by Dyke’s comments, BBC reports.

Last month, the Premier League’s CEO had said switching the World Cup to winter would “cause chaos” for football leagues around the world, affecting broadcast deals and requiring players’ contracts to be rewritten.

Qatar responded to the latest remarks by maintaining that it is ready to hold the games in the sweltering summer months, or in the winter, if that’s what the international community desired.

Ultimately, only FIFA can make that call. Recently, in a complete about-face, President Sepp Blatter said the football community would be better off if the Cup was played in winter. He said an executive committee would consider moving the games in October.

Thoughts?

Credit: Photo by Groundhopping Merseburg

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