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SBD Global/March 8, 2013/International Football

Asian Football Confederation Candidate Calls Michel Platini's World Cup Sharing Idea 'Crazy'

UAE FA Chair Yousuf Al Serkal called UEFA President Michel Platini's idea that Qatar share the 2022 World Cup hosting rights with its Middle East neighbors "crazy," according to Sudipto Ganguly of REUTERS. Platini has long called for the World Cup to be "shared by the tiny Arab state and that the tournament should be moved to the end of the year to avoid the soaring temperature in June and July." The Frenchman, tipped to succeed FIFA President Sepp Blatter, "reiterated his stance on Saturday." But Al Serkal, who is chasing the presidency of the Asian Football Confederation at its May elections, "found the suggestion humorous." Al Serkal said, "It is a crazy idea. First of all this cannot happen. The FIFA executive committee has already taken a decision and awarded the 2022 World Cup to the Qataris. We support Qatar to host the World Cup independently and we are not interested in any sharing." Al Serkal, also a Asian Football Confederation VP, said that he was "a fan of the introduction of goalline technology," another issue which Platini "staunchly opposes." He said, "I think it is a good idea. I had attended a FA board meeting in England and FIFA had explained the whole idea behind the technology and I am definitely a supporter" (REUTERS, 3/7).
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