SBD/March 20, 2014/Events and Attractions

IMG World Congress Of Sports: Garber Says '22 World Cup Becoming "Monumental Disaster"

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Garber said MLS will yield to FIFA to resolve the issues with the '22 Qatar World Cup
MLS Commissioner Don Garber yesterday said the decision to award Qatar the '22 FIFA World Cup and the potential that the event may have to move from summer to winter because of weather was a “monumental disaster” for soccer worldwide. He added that he hopes the event is moved. “We certainly would be happy to host it here and have a lot of big stadiums that could turn it around and host on very short notice,” said Garber, who spoke on the opening panel of the '14 IMG World Congress of Sports. “But we’re going to be on the sidelines on this and hope that FIFA can resolve this in a way that’s good for the sport.” Garber’s comments followed a question about reports claiming that former FIFA executive committee member Jack Warner took $1.2M in bribes from a Qatari group prior to FIFA’s vote to award Qatar the '22 World Cup. FIFA is investigating the allegations. “That now is going to get a lot more legs,” Garber said. “If more comes out, who knows what happens. It’s very disappointing. It’s an unpleasant aspect of the global football business.” Garber said the uncertainty around when the Qatar World Cup would be held “is a very difficult situation for our sport.” There is talk that it could be in November '21 or January '22. “Their broadcast partners here might have a problem with it going up against (NFL) football,” Garber said. “It affects all of us for many, many years.”
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