Skiing fans opposed to a winter World Cup

The organisational blips continue as we count down to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar – but a potential move to winter is continuing to gather opposition.

Skiing fans opposed to a winter World Cup

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November 4th, 2013

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When awarding the 2022 tournament to the Persian Gulf nation ahead of more feasible bids from the likes of Australia, Japan, South Korea and the United States on the same day that England were denied the previous instalment, FIFA executives didn’t appear to take into account that it can get a bit warm during the summer months in the Middle East.

Indeed, with temperatures typically inching over 40 degrees Celsius, the potential health hazards of running up and down a football pitch for 90 minutes should have been more carefully considered. After chief Blatter’s insistence that “The Fifa World Cup 2022 will be played in Qatar. There you have it,” more reasonable courses of action have been blocked – and with that, discussions to propose the tournament’s move to the winter months of 2022 have been welcomed by those of a more water-based disposition.

Having cleared the roadblock that is most domestic leagues by having the ones affected agree to a potential rescheduling of their football season – one which they only have nine years to arrange by the way, so time is of the essence – more organisations have emerged to protest the planned move. (Well, I say ‘planned’…)

Today the FIS – that’s the international body for skiing by the way – has stated that they will “submit a proposal to the other six International Winter Sports Federations to sign a resolution against organising the World Cup during the winter sports season in 2022”. It seems that they would be afraid of losing sponsors and viewers to the much more popular game during that brief month – which again, won’t be happening for another nine years.

Now, I don’t know about you, but I don’t imagine that the respective Venn diagrams for fans of skiing and football are particularly close together. Even if they were, why would there not be the space for them to co-exist?

If the 2022 winter sports calendar – which by the way, is a Winter Olympics year, thus guaranteeing an even stronger profile than usual – is so in jeopardy of losing its fans to the football pitch in their droves, then perhaps some work is needed on raising those sports’ profile in their own right rather than doling out the blame on a sport which will invariably get its own way no matter what the time of year – or in which year.

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