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SBD Global/May 23, 2013/International Football

Bundesliga Says Date Change To 2022 Qatar World Cup Could Lead To Legal Challenges

Germany's Bundesliga "has warned that any attempt to move the 2022 World Cup in Qatar to the winter could lead to legal challenges by European leagues," according to the BBC. UEFA President Michel Platini said that the World Cup could be moved, "but European leagues might be disrupted for up to three seasons if that happens." Bundesliga CEO Christian Seifert said, "I am not sure legally you can say 'we'll just play in winter.'" Seifert said it is "impossible" to play in Qatar in the heat of the summer, adding that the decision to hold the tournament in the Middle East country is "not for the good of the game" (BBC, 5/22). The AP's Rob Harris wrote Seifert, speaking in London ahead of the all-German Champions League final between Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund, said that "staging the tournament in the tiny desert nation's summer heat could endanger the health of players and fans." If the tournament was moved to the Gulf winter, it would likely be played in Jan. and Feb. '22 -- "splitting the Bundesliga season and impacting the start and finish dates of leagues across Europe." Seifert said, "From other leagues I do have the feeling they are also very upset with the situation." Seifert said that moving the dates to winter "could also spark calls for a re-vote." Seifert: "I am absolutely sure if countries like England see a chance of a re-vote they will force a re-vote" (AP, 5/22).

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