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Sat 3 Dec 2011 09:36 AM

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Platini eyes winter switch for Qatar World Cup 2022

UEFA president says prepared to move Euro club commitments to make change

Platini eyes winter switch for Qatar World Cup 2022
UEFA president Michel Platini
Platini eyes winter switch for Qatar World Cup 2022
Fans wearing traditional local dress attend the Gharafa vs. Kharaitiyat Qatar Stars League football match at Al Gharafa Stadium on October 23, 2011 in Doha. (Getty Images)
Platini eyes winter switch for Qatar World Cup 2022
A sign on the FIFA headquarters in Zurich. (Getty Images)

UEFA president Michel Platini has called for the 2022 World Cup to be staged in the winter to avoid the searing summer temperatures.

Platini told Al Jazeera English in an interview that he is prepared to move European club competitions to accommodate the switch.

The remarks are significant as Platini is favourite to replace current FIFA president Sepp Blatter and may well be in charge of world football in 2022. 

"How can people go to Qatar in 60 degrees in June? If people can't come to enjoy it, it's not good," Platini said in the Al Jazeera interview.

"So when is the best moment for this beautiful World Cup? It is the most important thing in football and we have to play it at a good moment. If we play in wintertime, this will not be a problem," he added.

"They said they will [cool] the stadiums but people will come to Qatar for two or three weeks. If it is 60 degrees they will never leave the hotel, which is not correct.

"That is why we need to think of what is the best moment for the World Cup, because it is the best moment of the year in football."

Last month, Qatar said it remained flexible over dates for the 2022 World Cup and was prepared to move the tournament to the winter months if FIFA asked.

Qatar 2022 Supreme Committee secretary general Hassan Abdullah al-Thawadi said no such discussions had yet taken place.

“Right now, the plans are on to host the World Cup in summer itself. However, if Fifa asks the organisers to postpone the championship to winter, we won’t oppose the proposal,” al-Thawadi said.

Speaking at the Aspire4Sport Conference in Doha he said the country was already working on the air cooling technology to meet the needs of players and fans.

Platini also said that not the decision to hold the tournament in the Gulf was not a unanimous one.

"But I voted for Qatar. It's nice to be in another part of the world where people never organised a World Cup," he added.

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SRF 8 years ago

Moving the European season will have an impact on the previous season the the one following that. What sort of costs will be involved? Who's going to pay for it?

F Backer 8 years ago

the world cup should not be fixed only during the summers just because of the European seasons!

This way, world cup can be held around the world

Lionheart 8 years ago

The criteria is for the competiton to be played in June / July . It doesn't matter if it's winter or summer here people will still be in the hotels as there's nothing to do in Qatar .

Brian 8 years ago

The World Cup is played around the world, just not in ridiculous locations!

procan 8 years ago

World Cup, time and place its about the money, if Qatar can make it happen without loss of revenue , then it will happen for sure. This a private business motivated by money . Personally Qatar should have no problem, technology is there and the will to achieve there goal to be on the world stage" go QATAR go" .