SBD/October 7, 2013/Events and Attractions

Blatter Vows To Keep '22 World Cup In Qatar, Saying Winter Or Summer Decision Will Wait

Blatter wants to play the '14 World Cup before addressing the '22 tournament
FIFA President Sepp Blatter on Friday said the '22 FIFA World Cup "will be played in Qatar -- that’s it," according to James Montague of the N.Y. TIMES. Blatter emerged from two days of FIFA Exec Committee meetings to "address serious questions" about the event. He said that FIFA General Secretary Jerome Valcke would study moving the event to winter and "report back" sometime after the '14 World Cup in Brazil. Blatter: "Let us play 2014 with an easy conscience. Afterward, we will look at when the best time the World Cup will be played in Qatar." Montague wrote Blatter "bought himself and his organization more time" (N.Y. TIMES, 10/5). In L.A., David Wharton noted Exec Committee members "decided to put off any immediate decisions" and will "begin a consultation process to further examine" moving the '22 World Cup from summer to winter. The committee also directed Blatter "to speak with Qatari officials about treatment of foreign workers" (LATIMES.com, 10/4). FIFA Exec Committee member Michel D'Hooghe said that a final decision on when the event will take place "is unlikely" before '15 (AP, 10/4). In London, Roger Blitz reported FIFA "will have to factor in compensation claims" from sponsors, broadcasters and domestic leagues in deciding whether to move the '22 World Cup to the winter (FINANCIAL TIMES, 10/4). Meanwhile, in Bahrain, Patrick Salomon reported Asian Football Confederations President Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa "has been tasked" to head FIFA's task force (GULF DAILY NEWS, 10/6). 
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