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SBD Global/October 1, 2013/International Football

U.K. Sports Minister Robertson Says FIFA Has Made 'A Mess' Of Qatar World Cup

U.K. Sports Minister Hugh Robertson has condemned FIFA for making "a mess" of handing the 2022 World Cup to Qatar "but sees no option other than moving the tournament to the winter," according to the PA. Robertson also believes that "those other countries who bid for 2022 should be compensated" by FIFA. Robertson said, "I don't think anybody in the world of football thinks a World Cup in Qatar in the summer is a sensible or deliverable option. To that extent, this is a mess of FIFA's own making." Robertson said that he sympathized with calls for compensation "but does not believe there should be a re-vote" for '22. Robertson: "FIFA has to remember there are a series of other countries who bid for that 2022 World Cup in good faith and are now going to find the goalposts have moved. If it's held in the winter that's absolutely sensible, but to have a re-pitch would be quite unfair on the Qataris. I think a deal should be done where the fact the Qataris won it fair and square is acknowledged but other nations who bid for 2022 are compensated in some shape or form, either financially or by hosting other FIFA tournaments" (PA, 9/30).

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