Qatar 2022 should be moved, says Premier League boss

Richard Scudamore says World Cup should be moved to another country if Qatar cannot host summer event

Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore.

Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore.

Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore has said that if the World Cup in Qatar in 2022 cannot be held in the summer, it should be moved to another country.

Speaking at the Premier League Asian Trophy in Hong Kong, and quoted in Monday's British newspapers, he expressed his worries that the 2022 World Cup will be moved from the European summer to winter months because of the intense heat in Qatar, thus disrupting his league.

Earlier this month, FIFA Sepp Blatter reiterated his concerns over a summer World Cup saying it should be moved to the winter with the FIFA executive committee meeting to discuss the issue in October.

Scudamore is totally opposed to the idea.

"I'm not going to say I think it will happen because I'm still working the best I can, garnering enough support, a groundswell of support, to make sure it doesn't happen in winter.

"We do want to have it in summer - the summer is the right time.

"If Qatar is unable to hold a proper tournament in the summer for fans then it should be put on somewhere else is my simple view."

Qatar beat Australia, Japan, South Korea and the United States in a vote to host soccer's showpiece in the summer.

Qatar's bid involved building a number of air conditioned stadiums to tackle the searing temperatures and the tiny gulf state has long said they were ready to host the World Cup in winter if required.

Scudamore suggested moving the tournament.

"My view is if you can't actually meet the criteria of looking after the fans, if that is what Mr Blatter is now saying, then you should take it somewhere else where they can look after the fans," Scudamore said.

"When the technical bid book went in, it had to go through everything, like fan experience. The idea the technical committee did not know people were going to be exposed to that heat is crazy. If Mr Blatter says it is not right for the fans he should move it.

"The world has a calendar that's geared around finding those two months every four years in the summer to have the World Cup," he said. "To alter it to a different time of year messes up everybody's calendar, not just ours."

Scudamore said it was too early for the Premier League or other FA's or Leagues to consider legal action but did not rule it out.

"That's something that is far too contentious really. It's not a very edifying prospect is it? Taking on FIFA, the world governing body. At the end of the day we'll do our lobbying, our work, but it's far too premature to think of legal action."

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Posted by: david

Personally I think Blatter should be investigated, investigated and investigated. That being said, I am sure that Qatar could put on a fine show. However, I really don't understand the concept of holding this event in the summer in the ME, I don't understand how Qatar will cope with the rowdy and boisterous football crowd (let alone the hooligans that tag along) and I don't understand how Qatar will cope with the alcohol excesses given their recent negative attitudes towards alcohol. I also don't think anyone should be anticipating a change to the European calendar and if you DO think it should change then perhaps it is YOU who are being disrespectful. Qatar and FIFA took the bid on a summer schedule and it would be wrong to expect changes to this, unless, of course, that was the intention all along in which case the rest of the world has been hoodwinked and THAT would be even more disrespectful.

Posted by: Sheikha

So, to sum up. They won the bid for the world cup based on it being held in the summer. Now they want to move it to the winter.
How they won the bid in the first place is beyond me, you cannot have the world cup when its 50 degrees.
Let me predict: before the world cup: Qatar honoured to be hosting the World Cup. After the world cup: Qatar disgusted by behaviour of non muslims....
They want it both ways

Posted by: Roy Miller

Moving the tournament to the winter won't happen. It would ruin the European leagues who are also the ones that make the most cash (themselves and the players).

Qatar needs to demonstrate the viability of hosting a safe cup. Given them until say 2020 to prove it. If they can't, the U.S. as the second place bidder should be awarded the cup. All of the infrastructure and stadia are in place. There's no need for a 30b boondoggle like Brazil nor the kind of searing heat Qatar will experience.

Given the number of folks who attend World Cups versus the population of Qatar, I don't know how they can physically host that many folks in the first place.

Posted by: Ian

I lived in the Middle East for a number of years and was so excited when Qatar won this. However, my second reaction was 'it will be a bit hot!' and I wonder how many fans will be ill as a result. Soon after the bids were announced there was all sorts of accusations flying about corruption in FIFA. If FIFA really didn't take into account that it was hot in Qatar in the summer then surely this smacks of incompetence or corruption (or both) on their (FIFA's) part. My sympathies to Qatar for getting even indirectly tarred with FIFA's incompetence. I trust Qatar to put on a fantastic SUMMER event. But ensure the fans know what they are letting themselves in for well before they get there....

Posted by: Jeff

I hope, for everyone's sake, the solar cloud project is successful.

Posted by: Mark Williams


I was refering to the UKs preparation and execution of the Olympics as a standard to which Qatar can learn from,follow and exceed if they are to host a Summer World Cup. Being in the construction industry I have first hand knowledge regards how quickly things are moving generally, which is still very slow. As for changing my stance, I hope things get sorted however if not let it play out as it does. It's still a long way away.

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