Blatter to raise 2022 World Cup concerns with Qatar Emir

  • Share via facebook
  • Tweet this
  • Bookmark and Share

President of football’s world governing body FIFA, Sepp Blatter said he would raise concerns over working conditions and moving the 2022 World Cup during a visit to meet the new Qatari Emir later this month.

Qatar has come under fire since being awarded the rights to host the prestigious tournament, with complaints that foreign labourers used to build new stadiums are dying due to poor conditions, and concerns the series should not be held during the searing summer heat.

“There are some social problems linked with working activities there [Qatar],” Blatter said during a video interview with fifa.com.

“There are also sporting problems with the calendar, so I will have a very interesting discussion with him and then I will report to the executive committee on the 4th and 5th of December in Brazil.”

Blatter said he was mandated by the organisation to meet with Qatar Emir Tamim Bin Hamad, who took the helm after his father voluntarily abdicated in June.

Human rights groups and trade unions claim dozens of labourers already have died while working on World Cup infrastructure in Doha.

Blatter has so far avoided public comment on the matter.

However, he has repeatedly said he no longer supports hosting the tournament in Qatar’s summer, when temperatures can reach 50 degrees.

In August he conceded it was a mistake to award a summer tournament to the desert state.

However, he said hosting it in winter may not be feasible, his strongest indication yet that the event could be taken away from Qatar.

“Those that have taken the decision at the time, they knew there is problems with the heat,” Blatter told AP.

“They knew it, because it was in the [bid evaluation] report. It was wrong to say, ‘now we have to play in summer,’ because in summer you cannot play there.

"Therefore the [executive committee] now shall take the decision - and they will take it - that in summer you can't play in Qatar."

During the fifa.com interview, Blatter said he also would meet with new Iranian President Hassan Rouhani to discuss the future of football in that country.

He also expressed his desire to axe the World Cup play-offs, in which countries play a home-and-away double-header to determine the last few teams to compete at the tournament.

Blatter said he would like to see a fairer system.

"The play-off matches will bring a lot of excitement and a lot of spectators, and I would also say not only emotion but passion, and there will be drama,” he said.

"This is good for television, this is good for the spectacle of football.

"But I think we should try to find a solution where at the end of [qualifiers] you are in or out and not this play-off.

"Okay, it gives more intensive action, but for those teams involved it is a hard way to go."

Related:
Join the Discussion

Disclaimer:The view expressed here by our readers are not necessarily shared by Arabian Business, its employees, sponsors or its advertisers.

Please post responsibly. Commenter Rules

Posted by: Paul

Is it really necessary this man of dubious reputation to go all the way to Qatar to meet the country's leader to tell him something that the whole world knows it is going on systematically for decades??!!
Has anything changed in Qatar since The Guardian exposed the modern slavery practiced in all GCC countries and in particular in this case, in Qatar?
The answer is NO. There is still no minimum (decent) salary imposed by law in line with the cost of living where the labor provide their services, their passports are still held by their employers, an exit permit is still required in Qatar, there is still no maximum hours of work per week enforced, there is still no mandatory annual holidays. The richest countries in the world, fueled by petro wealth, are still paying miserable salaries to the poorest on earth!
And we all stand here pretending that this is normal and we can go on with our glamorous life in the Gulf, side by side of this systematic abuse!

Enter the words above: Enter the numbers you hear:

All comments are subject to approval before appearing

Further reading

Features & Analysis
Creating an empire: Inside the world of a wellness visionary

Creating an empire: Inside the world of a wellness visionary

Arabian Business travels to Italy to learn how Technogym's Nerio...

Dhow racing in Dubai

Dhow racing in Dubai

The race to Al Gaffal will see hundreds of dhows race in Dubai...

Brand slam

Brand slam

Gulf blue chips are now closely associated with most of the world...

Most Popular
Most Discussed
  • 10
    UAE teens among the highest for obesity rates

    Everyone in UAE knows that biggest is best.

    UAE may not light up the international league tables in standard of living, education standards, press... more

    Friday, 29 August 2014 4:20 PM - Proud UAEer
  • 9
    Saudi Arabia seeks talks on hiring of Sri Lankan maids

    perhaps the unemployed saudi men or the millions of women who are not allowed to work could pick up a broom and start sweeping their own houses. more

    Sunday, 31 August 2014 3:28 PM - nice
  • 9
    Smoke-free Dubai - the big debate

    Surprisingly the only studies that show a negative financial impact of the smoking ban on the hospitality industry are sponsored by tobacco companies ... more

    Wednesday, 27 August 2014 4:19 PM - Telcoguy
  • 24
    World's most pierced man refused entry to the UAE

    Tolerance has its limits everywhere including Dubai and those who considered Dubai a lawless circus were held accountable...so thank you Dubai authorities... more

    Thursday, 21 August 2014 10:51 PM - Khalil
  • 23
    Baby NOT on board?

    Some of you cry babies need to get your own personal apartments on the plane ! You cry more then the babies I have seen in my travels. LOL more

    Thursday, 28 August 2014 9:10 AM - Jim
  • 21
    Israel “must be punished” over Gaza, says Dubai police chief

    This high moral ground that Mick is talking abt sound very familiar. May I remind Mick that the US & its British ally alone killed over 1 million innocent... more

    Thursday, 7 August 2014 4:12 PM - Mathew