UEFA boss says 2022 FIFA event should be shifted to winter to accommodate for Qatar’s summer heat
Michel Platini, the UEFA president, has said that he is determined to ensure the 2022 FIFA World Cup is staged during the European winter for the first time.
In an interview with the London Evening Standard, Platini said that he hoped the Qatar tournament would be held in conditions that would prove beneficial to everyone involved.
“I hope it will be held in winter,” he said. “We have to go to Qatar when it is good for everybody to participate. What is better for the fans?”
The move would necessitate the European football leagues taking a month long winter break, including the Premier League, which has no mid-season break at all. However, Platini says there is enough time to work out a solution.
“In 10 years, we can manage how to decide how we can postpone the season for one month,” he said.
“January is difficult for the World Cup because you have the Winter Olympic Games. If we stop from November 2 to December 20, it means, instead of finishing in May, we stop in June. It’s not a big problem. It is for the good of the World Cup, the most important competition in the world,” Platini explained.
Qatar is spending heavily to develop and upgrade its infrastructure to meet the influx of tourists and football fans that are expected to descend upon the country during the tournament.
As much as $41.8bn has been allocated to develop railway projects, with both national and inner-city links set to be built.
Since being named as the host for the World Cup, Qatar’s leaders have devised a strategy that involves the development of infrastructure in preparation for the event.
This includes the building of several stadiums and a new, $11bn international airport.