By Qatar's insistence yesterday that the 2022 World Cup finals will be played in the 50C-plus temperatures of a Middle East summer, the hosts have left their erstwhile friend Sepp Blatter, the Fifa president, with a most uncomfortable choice.
Either Fifa goes ahead with the 2022 tournament in June and July and risks humiliation on a grand scale, especially if the untested technology to air-condition whole stadiums fails. Or it takes its medicine now and, 11 years before this farcical tournament is due to take place, informs Qatar that it has made a dreadful mistake and will reconsider the host for 2022.
This is a mess, and one made by the self-serving dictators of Fifa's executive committee, who are literally making up rules as they go along – awarding tournaments to unsuitable nations and then changing the original spec in order to solve the problems.
Fifa is not fit for purpose and, to make matters worse, the Uefa president, Michel Platini, is in it up to his neck. His half-cocked idea to make it a Gulf-wide World Cup rather than just Qatari has been rejected. This is a man trying desperately to cover up a serious mistake and succeeding only in digging the hole deeper.
Not even Fifa believes that a World Cup in the summer in Qatar can happen. Unfortunately, the only people who disagree are the Qataris and they are the only ones who can change the dates. Fifa has to admit its mistake and change the 2022 hosts now.Reuse content