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SBD Global/August 14, 2014/Leagues and Governing Bodies
ECA's Umberto Gandini Says European Football Has To Make Sure FFP Rules Not Detrimental
Published August 14, 2014
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THE HEAT IS ON: Not as close is the organization’s relationship with FIFA on the issue, and also when it comes to the concerns surrounding the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. Gandini told SBD Global during his visit to Charlotte that the ECA has a clear position on Qatar. “We are open to a shift in date, in period actually, but it will be something that has to be agreed by the European football family and then FIFA,” he said. With Europe in principal agreeing to move the World Cup from summer to winter, there are still several obstacles that have to be overcome. The ECA's priority is preserving the interest of its players as well as Europe’s national and int’l competitions. Therefore, the ideal period of playing the World Cup is at some point between December and February, when European football is down to about one-third of its capacity. However, simply picking the period when it would best fit into the schedule does not cut it. “We have to avoid competition with the Winter Olympics, which have not been awarded yet,” he said. “I also cannot deny that for the American broadcasters, putting the World Cup against the Super Bowl is probably not the ideal solution.” All those factors will be taken into consideration by the stakeholders before making a decision. The first meeting of the committee tasked with the issue will be in September and run through December. “We will have a fair debate and a fair decision on this, so nobody can complain,” Gandini said. The ultimate decision, however, lies in the hands of the FIFA executive committee.