World Cup: Awarding Qatar with 2022 World Cup was 'a mistake' says Fifa president Sepp Blatter, but 'one makes lots of mistakes in life'
Blatter attempts to justify the decision but reiterates Qatar have not 'bought' the 2022 World Cup
Friday 16 May 2014
Fifa president Sepp Blatter has admitted that awarding Qatar the 2022 World Cup was “a mistake” but stressed that the nation had not bought the tournament.
Qatar was awarded the 2022 World Cup in 2010 much to the surprise of the football world, given that temperatures in the summer can soar beyond 50-degress centigrade. Despite warnings about the heat and the impact it will have on the players, Fifa have maintained that the tournament will be held in the Middle East, but Blatter has since admitted that it was a mistake.
He also confirmed that it is “probable” that the month-long tournament will have to take place in the winter in a bid to avoid the hottest time of the year, despite the World Cup traditionally taking place during the summer.
Speaking to Swiss TV station RTS, Blatter said: “Yes, it was a mistake of course, but one makes lots of mistakes in life.
“The technical report into Qatar said clearly it was too hot but the executive committee - with a large majority - decided all the same to play it in Qatar.”
Since Qatar was named as the 2022 host, allegations of corruption and bribery have blighted the tournament, with a number of Fifa’s executive committee who were involved in making the decision to award them the World Cup being found guilty of corruption at a later date.
However, Blatter insisted that Qatar had not “bought” the right to host the World Cup, but that “political considerations” were partly responsible for the decision.
“No, I have never said it was bought, but that it was due to political considerations,” Blatter added.
The build-up to Qatar 2022, which has been blighted by a number of controversies, has seen both the issues of homosexuality and slavery questioned. The fact that homosexuality is illegal in Qatar could have a major effect on the tournament, while the building of both the stadiums and the facilities needed to stage such an event have been likened to “modern slavery” with a number of deaths being reported.
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