FIFA task-force recommends winter World Cup for Qatar 2022
The head of the Asian Football Confederation, Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al-Khalifa, has confirmed that the FIFA task force looking into the Qatar World Cup dates, has recommended shortening of the tournament and wants to conclude the event between November and December 2022. Unconfirmed reports have come out suggesting that the final will be held the day before Christmas Eve.
Al-Khalifa said that all options would be put up for review at the FIFA meeting next month, where the recommendation is expected to be ratified by FIFA’s executive committee.
He said, “Some people have concerns, but whatever decision you’re going to take will have some questions about it. But we need to look at the overall benefit of everybody.”
The FIFA statement read..
“The outcome of the discussions is also a proposed reduced competition days schedule with the exact dates to be defined in line with the match schedule and number of venues to be used for the 22nd edition of football’s flagship event.
“The proposed event dates have the full support of all six confederations. The proposal will be discussed at the next meeting of the FIFA executive committee, scheduled to take place at the Home of FIFA in Zurich on 19 and 20 March 2015.”
There shortened time frame of the tournament will not mean any reduction of the size of the tournament. There were rumours earlier that the number of participating countries could be reduced from 32 teams. According to reports, the tournament will just be shortened by few days.
If the recommendation is ratified in FIFA’s Zurich meeting in March, it will set Fifa on a direct collision course with major European leagues who prefer the tournament to be held on April-May in order to minimise disruption to their lucrative domestic schedule.