[WORLD CUP 2022] Qatari Mohamed bin Hammam, the president of the Asian Football Confederation and a key member of the FIFA executive committee that picked Qatar over the USA to host the 2022 World Cup, became the latest person to back moving the 2022 World Cup to the winter months to avoid Qatar's desert heat in summer.
Qatar proposed air-conditioning stadiums and other facilities to combat the heat that averages 107 degrees in the summer, but FIFA executive committee members Franz Beckenbauer and Michel Platini quickly came out in support of making the switch after Qatar's selection on Dec. 2 as the 2022 host.
FIFPro, the international players union, went so far as to say the event "must be held in winter."
"If the competition were held in June and July, it will perfectly organized by the host," Bin Hammam said. "If the competition would be moved to January, it will be a sort of win-win situation for all the parties."
Opposition to the move has mostly come from big European clubs, who would be impacted by modifications in the schedule for the 2010-11, 2011-12 and 2012-13 seasons.
Bin Hammam's AFC is organizing the 2011 Asian Cup in January for the very reasons the 2022 World Cup looks to be headed to the winter. And this is despite the fact that the winter schedule poses conflicts for national teams trying to get players released from European clubs.