Premier League Urged to Accept Winter 2022 World Cup

August 12, 2013

FIFA vice-president Jim Boyce has told the Premier League to co-operate with football’s governing body if the 2022 World Cup in Qatar is moved to the winter.

With temperatures soaring to around 50C in Qatar during the summer months, many leading figures, including FIFA president Sepp Blatter, have called for the tournament to be played in the winter.

The English Premier League has opposed the move because the domestic campaign will be interrupted.

However, Boyce has said there is plenty of time to prepare and the Premier League will have to co-operate with what FIFA decides.

Speaking to BBC Radio 5 live’s Sportsweek, Boyce said: “Most of the opposition appears to be coming from the Premier League. If Fifa do decide they are going to move it to the winter calendar I would hope it is done in the right spirit.

“I fully understand the Premier League and what is being said here. But it’s in nine years’ time, not next year or the following year, and [I] would hope people – for the good of football – can sit down and realise a sensible decision has to be made here.

“I read the Premier League are saying this impacts on three seasons. If people sit down and work out the calendar properly, I don’t see why it would affect three seasons.”

Boyce did however say that FIFA should have properly considered the rising temperatures at the time of voting for Qatar, back in 2010.

“I personally believe this should have been considered at the time. I accept that this should have been considered; that’s hindsight,” said the former Irish Football Association president

Summer World Cup ‘impossible’

The new chairman of the Football Association, Greg Dyke, also said it would be ‘impossible’ for the 2022 World Cup to be played in Qatar’s summer heat.

Dyke told reporters: “Even if all the stadia are air-conditioned, I think it will be impossible for the fans.

“Just go out there and wander around in that sort of heat. I just don’t think it’s possible.

“My position, and I suspect the FA’s position, will be: ‘You can’t play it in the summer’.”

Boyce agreed with Dyke’s statement and responded: “The situation in Qatar, and everyone knows this as Greg Dyke rightly says, is that the temperature exceeds 50 degrees at times.

“How can you take thousands of people to the greatest sporting event in the world and ask them to enjoy themselves in conditions I think are impossible?

“I honestly believe, medically, you would be asking for massive problems not just for the players but for the spectators.”

{jcomments on}