Fifa deny 2022 World Cup confirmed for winter
Zurich, January 9
Fifa have responded to general secretary Jerome Valcke claiming the 2022 Qatar World Cup will be held during the winter by declaring a decision had not been made over the timing of the tournament.Despite tournament organisers’ hopes of hosting a summer tournament in June and July, Fifa president Sepp Blatter had denied the prospect saying that it will instead be held in November or December.
And Valcke says it is more likely to take place at some point between November and January.
He said, “The dates for the World Cup (in Qatar) will not be June to July. To be honest, I think it will be held between November 15 and January 15 at the latest.”
“If you play between 15 November and the end of December that’s the time when the weather conditions are best, when you can play in temperatures equivalent to a warm spring season in Europe, averaging 25 degrees. That would be perfect for playing football.”
But Fifa officials have since added: “The precise event date is still subject to a consultation process. The consultation process won’t be rushed.”
The confusion is the latest controvercy to hit the tournament since Qatar were awarded the World Cup back in December 2010 despite the unbearable summer temperatures which can reach 50 degrees celcius.Subsequent human rights allegations have also clouded the bid.
Fifa’s top inspector, Harold Mayne-Nichols even admitted that a summer tournament in the Gulf state would be “impossible.”
Football Association chairman Greg Dyke also said in an interview with Sky News that it was probably a mistake giving the tournament to Qatar amid fears that players, fans and officials could succumb to the sweltering temperatures.
While the Qatar 2022 Supreme Committee has indicated that they would be happy to hold a winter World Cup, failed bidders Australia said they would have sought compensation from Fifa if the tournament was held during the winter months.
Blatter says that Fifa will come to a firm decision in December 2014.