FIFA Should Negotiate Its Way Out of Qatar For 2022 World Cup

sepp blatter

Witters Sport- USA Today Sports

There is no doubt among soccer fans that giving the tiny nation of Qatar the privilege of hosting the 2022 World Cup was a huge mistake by FIFASepp Blatter‘s half-baked idea to move the tournament to winter to avoid the brutal summer heat in Qatar is not enough, and FIFA desperately needs to find a different nation, preferably a more traditional soccer nation, to host the World Cup.

It was a mistake promising the 2022 World Cup to Qatar to begin with, and now FIFA needs to find a way out of that commitment. There is no substitution for the honor of hosting a World Cup, so FIFA must negotiate with Qatar and find something that will appease them in exchange for giving up the World Cup.

My opening offer would be to allow Qatar to host the next two Asian Confederation tournaments and give Qatar’s national team a free pass to the final group stage of Asian World Cup Qualifying for the next three World Cups. That’s just my opening offer, the two sides can negotiate from there; there has to be something Qatar would accept in exchange for not hosting the World Cup in 2022.

No, it’s not the most moral solution to the problem, but no one ever accused soccer of being the most moral sport, or FIFA of being the most moral organization. It doesn’t appear as if FIFA can just say that they made a mistake and take away the World Cup from Qatar, but they can negotiate with Qatar for the right to move the 2022 World Cup to another location. It wouldn’t be great for public relations, but it would be best for the sport and for the tournament itself; above all else, FIFA can’t allow the World Cup to happen in Qatar.

Short of a coup to remove Blatter from power, this may be FIFA’s only hope to get itself out of its deal with Qatar. If all else fails, fans may want to put together a petition imploring FIFA to move the tournament. Imagine if all of Europe and half the Western Hemisphere put their names on a sheet of paper, FIFA would have to do something to get out of Qatar in 2022, right?


Bryan Zarpentine is a New York Mets writer at He also writes frequently about the NFL, College Football, College Basketball, and International Soccer. Like him on Facebook, follow him on twitter @BZarp and add him on Google.

Related Links:

Sepp Blatter Confident 2022 World Cup Will Move To Winter

Qatar Goes All In On 2022 World Cup

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  • MIMH

    Can’t see that happening, lawsuits will fly if they try to take it off Qatar. Too much face for an Arab nation to lose.

    • Bryan Zarpentine

      I’m saying to avoid a law suit, negotiate with them and give them something to compensate for not hosting since they can’t just steal it away without consequences.

      • Jim

        Not gonna happen. Shut up and deal with it, whiner. WC2022 in Qatar!

        • Phil Naegely

          Fox sports says no move to winter or else! FIFA will balk because of fox and the big tv contract

  • King Mak

    Your idea is very good. But…

  • Jim

    You’re full of it. I’m a huge soccer fan, and I think that giving Qatar the privilege of hosting the 2022 World Cup was a great decision by FIFA. And I know I’m not alone.
    Excuse me, Bryan, but don’t please don’t let your blind arrogance trick you into believing that you speak for “soccer fans.” You speak for you, and that’s all.
    WC2022 is going to be Qatar. Suck it up, stop whining, be a man, and deal with it.

    • Bryan Zarpentine

      Well, you’re the first one I’ve met. I don’t think I ever said “we” in the article once.

    • reader

      You either have never been in Qatar during the summer or you are a Qatari!
      If you are a Qatari, you know very well that it is impossible to walk outdoors more than 5 – 10 minutes, not to mention to play football! You know that everybody either escapes Qatar in the summer or moves arround as if you were in a lunar atmosphere, always inside climatised venues or cars!
      The author was right, the whole world (minus those directly profiting from it) knows that it was a huge mistake, greased by curroption to award the cup to a country with only one city, with 350,000 inhabitants (the rest are expats and migrants living in containeurs), and ofcourse with the summer horrible weather that all knew since the begining of times!

      • Jim

        Wrong on all counts, “reader.” I’m an American lawyer, and I travel to Qatar monthly. 5-10 minutes outdoors, even during the heat of the day, would scarcely be impossible unless one were elderly or had a heart condition.

        Regardless, the stadia are going to be air conditioned. The games are going to be played at night. It’s going to be just fine. Stop whining about the climate.

        This isn’t about Qatar’s heat, this is about the football “in-crowd” being forced to give way to give way to little second- and third-world countries, and they don’t like it. Well, get used to it.

        • reader

          You might be an American passport holder but someone who looks down on Israel, prefers Al Jazeera instead of CNN and BBC, calls Obama a clown and refers to Americans as “they” and not as “we”, sure does not sound like a typical American to me. But hey, who I am to profile you based on your words!
          The point here is that your knowledge of Qatar’s weather or the information you chose to release, is not accurate.
          Qatari summers are extremely hot, night and day. There is the humidity factor that makes 50 C feel like 60C. At night the temperatures go down to 30 – 35 C but the humidity makes it unbearable to walk or stand outdoors for periods longer than 10 minutes. If you do so, you will be covered with sweat.
          Besides the humidity, we get sand storms quite often in this period of the year. Many times the skies in Qatar in June –July are yellowish-grey and the air is not breathable.
          If you are a lawyer who visits Qatar, you will also know that maids and labor make 150 to 200 US$/month. There are no laws to protect these workers from systematic abuses, not even a law to establish a minimum salary! Often these workers have to pay 1000+ US$ to obtain a working visa, just to find out that they have to work for almost a year to pay back that fee. Their passports are removed and their movements in the country are conditioned. Either they are just allowed to leave the house with their employers (no day off) or in case of the labors, on their day off, they are not allowed to go to shopping malls, the souk and cornice (road by the sea). As a lawyer you should know, that its not because Qatar is 2nd or 3rd world as you put it, its because Qatar has a labor law that promotes slavery and has climate conditions in the summer that are close to lunar atmosphere!
          Not to mention that the local culture is not compatible with the World Cup festivity culture! Also not to mention that Qatar only has one city with very poor infrastructures and congested traffic! When on earth the world cup was organized in one city only?
          Have you heard about the private connections between Sarkozy, the Emir of Qatar and Platini? Do you know what is the real intention of Qatar, besides the genuine good intentions?
          The whole world knows it was a mistake to award this event to Qatar. If they knew Qatar like I know (I live here) they would have been shocked with disbelieve of the obscene and irresponsible FIFA’s decision.
          There is a huge lack of social conscience here and at all levels!

  • reader

    Welldone in reporting facts!

    • Bryan Zarpentine

      Thanks, appreciate it!