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FIFA Chieftain: 2022 World Cup May Hold In Nov/Dec.

FIFA Chieftain: 2022 World Cup May Hold In Nov/Dec.

The 2022 World Cup in Qatar can only be held in November and December, says the head of Fifa’s taskforce looking into possible dates for the tournament, according to bbcsport.

Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al-Khalifa has ruled out a May tournament – the European leagues’ preferred option.
Qatar’s bid proposed a summer tournament, but temperatures in the Gulf state are believed to pose a potential risk to players’ health.

A January/February tournament would clash with the 2022 Winter Olympics.

“All parties have to compromise, not just the Europeans,” Sheikh Salman said.

The proposal raises the prospect of a stand-off between the game’s governing bodies and European Clubs over domestic schedules and player availability for the tournament.

However, Uefa president Michel Platini has already said it will be a winter tournament and “that it’s not possible to play in May when it’s 40 degrees.”

Sheikh Salman, president of the Asian Football Confederation, said there were two winter options – January/February or November/December – but cited a clash between January 2022 and the Winter Olympics as undesirable.

“We don’t want it to collide during that period,” he said.

“Stakeholders are concerned about playing in the summer, so we have to change to winter. That’s January or November. They have to make a choice – either a) or b).

“But I think everybody agrees that in January or February it’s difficult to play for the reasons that I mentioned before [Winter Olympics clash] so that leaves November/December.

“This is how I look at it. If someone can enlighten me and say there’s another time then I’m all ears to what they can come up with.”

However, a winter World Cup would also be problematic – not only for European league schedules, but for the Africa Cup of Nations, scheduled for January 2023 in Guinea.

Sheikh Salman said he hoped his proposal was “a done deal”, but said no decision would be made at Tuesday’s taskforce meeting in Doha. The tournament dates will be approved by Fifa’s executive committee, due to meet in March.

“Hopefully we can settle this issue once and for all,” he added.

A Premier League spokesman said the league’s position was unchanged on the matter: “The 2022 World Cup was bid for and awarded to Qatar as a summer tournament. The prospect of a winter World Cup is neither workable nor desirable for European domestic football.”

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