Qatar World Cup 2022: Fifa Executive Committee member Theo Zwanziger claims World Cup 'will not take place in Qatar'

Zwanziger believes that the searing temperatures in Qatar will force the World Cup to be played elsewhere

Karolos Grohmann
Monday 22 September 2014 12:22
Comments
Fifa Executive Committee member Theo Zwanziger
Fifa Executive Committee member Theo Zwanziger

The 2022 World Cup will not be held in Qatar because of the scorching temperatures in the Middle East country, Fifa Executive Committee member Theo Zwanziger said on Monday.

"I personally think that in the end the 2022 World Cup will not take place in Qatar," the German told Sport Bild on Monday.

"Medics say that they cannot accept responsibility with a World Cup taking place under these conditions," the former German football (DFB) chief, who is now a member of the world soccer's governing body Fifa that awarded the tournament to Qatar in 2010.

Although wealthy Qatar has insisted that a summer World Cup is viable thanks to cooling technologies it is developing for stadiums, training areas and fan zones, there is still widespread concern over the health of the players and visiting supporters.

"They may be able to cool the stadiums but a World Cup does not take place only there," Zwanziger said.

"Fans from around the world will be coming and travelling in this heat and the first life-threatening case will trigger an investigation by a state prosecutor.

"That is not something that Fifa Exco members want to answer for."

"He is expressing a personal opinion and he explicitly says so," Fifa spokewoman Delia Fischer said. "We will not comment on a personal opinion."

Fifa President Sepp Blatter said in May that awarding the World Cup to Qatar was a 'mistake' and the tournament would probably have to be held in the European winter.

"Of course, it was a mistake. You know, one comes across a lot of mistakes in life," he told Swiss television station RTS in an interview at the time.

"The Qatar technical report indicated clearly that it is too hot in summer, but the executive committee with quite a big majority decided all the same that the tournament would be in Qatar," he added.

Sepp Blatter has insisted the 2022 World Cup will be played in Qatar

Fifa is now looking to shift the tournament to a European winter date to avoid the scorching summer where temperatures routinely rise over 40 Celsius.

Asian Football Confederation (AFC) president Sheikh Salman Bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa chaired a meeting to discuss the matter earlier this month with the options of January/February 2022 and November/December 2022 offered as alternatives to June/July.

However, talk of a potential change away from the usual dates has resulted in plenty of opposition from domestic leagues around the world, worried the schedule switch would severely disrupt them.

Both Fifa and Qatar World Cup organisers have also been fending off questions of corruption ever since they were awarded the tournament back in 2010, while Qatar has also been criticised for the conditions provided for migrant workers' in the tiny Gulf state.

Reuters

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in