Reports are circulating that the controversial governing body FIFA will solidify its controversial decision to reward the Middle Eastern country of Qatar with the 2022 World Cup. The grandest prize in soccer/world football will all but certainly be played during November and December due to extreme heat in the nation’s summer months.
So, what’s the problem everybody? (and yes Sheldon Cooper, that’s sarcasm)
With the exception of Major League Soccer (MLS), virtually every major soccer league in the world competes during the winter months listed above. This includes a heavy majority (nearly all) of World Cup participants and its biggest global stars. It unnaturally interrupts their seasons and the critical evolutionary stage for team chemistry and individual development in training camps and league competitions, as well as the UEFA Champions League. Listing just a few big negatives with Qatar hosting the 2022 World Cup in its winter months starts with why?
That’s easy: money. Literally. Next.
The nation has no rich soccer history or traditions (ironic, right?), the summer heat is unbearably hot and the process for obtaining hosting rights was reported to be blatantly corrupt. Soccer-centric countries like Belgium & the Netherlands were passed on, including the undeniably enthusiastic up-and-comer United States of America. Remember, the USA hosted the 1994 World Cup and did a great job. Consequentially, the nation and its people have been inspired by the beautiful game ever since. It’s domestic league MLS was launched in 1996 and is about to enter its 20th season.
When you think of world-class soccer, Russia and Qatar instantly comes to mind, right? FIFA certainly hopes so because those are where the next two World Cups will be played. There are some countries where the World Cup should not be awarded. Whether it’s unsatisfactory infrastructure and venues, safety, entertainment for ticket buyers, lack of soccer culture and identity, corruption, safety, weather and overall atmosphere. There’s also the small fact that some nations haven’t earned this exclusive right to host a World Cup. Bear this in mind: the Netherlands finished 3rd and 2nd in the past two World Cups, yet they were been denied hosting rights for 2018 and the foreseeable future. South Korea and Germany (speaking from experience for Germany) did an excellent job hosting in 2002 and 2006. Going to games and being in that atmosphere in Germany was unforgettably amazing! It was world-class. In South Africa and Brazil in 2010 and 2014, there were a range of complaints and concerns. Even though Brazil is the most famous soccer country in the world, there were still serious questions that needed answering beforehand.
Recent news surrounding the 2022 World Cup occurring during Qatar’s winter months won’t quell speculation of FIFA’s scandalous decision-making DNA. In fact, it will only further intensify this corrupt reputation, maintaining the stigma that this group has a selling price for its services and, most devastatingly, its values.
Apologies. I meant “values.”