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A case for a January World Cup

  • Reuters, Thursday, January 6, 2011 12:38 AM

Asian Confederation President Mohamed Bin Hammam of Qatar says his country is fully prepared to meet the challenges of hosting the 2022 World Cup in the hot Middle Eastern summer months of June and July -- but cited advantages of moving the tournament to January.

"If you follow the organization of the World Cup usually the coaches are complaining that their players are exhausted by the end of the season," Bin Hammam said. "In June and July many of the players are fed up of any football, which is why FIFA came with the idea to finish the seasons and the leagues earlier by at least two weeks.

“Maybe people will think that if we organize the World Cup in the middle of the season when the players are still very fit, can still produce, can still can get better results, it will be better for the players, the coaches and good for the World Cup.”

The idea of holding the finals in January 2022 emerged after Qatar beat off opposition from South Korea, Japan, Australia and the USA. Qatar’s bid was based on a summer World Cup and its plans to air-condition stadiums and training grounds.

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