Confident of being cleared: Qatar 2022

Qatar's World Cup organisers deny wrongdoing during bidding process; EPL advised to introduce winter break.

    A decision on whether Qatar 2022 will be held in summer or winter has not been taken yet [EPA]
    A decision on whether Qatar 2022 will be held in summer or winter has not been taken yet [EPA]

    Qatar 2022 organisers are confident they will be exonerated in the independent investigation into the bidding process for the finals.

    Allegations of corruption have surrounded the voting that took place for the 2018 World Cup awarded to Russia and the 2022 event handed to Qatar in December 2010.

    New York lawyer Michael Garcia delivered his 350-page report last week to German judge Hans-Joachim Eckert, the head of FIFA's Ethics adjudicatory chamber who will decide on the consequences in about a month.

    "We've always been confident of our position in the way we carried ourselves during the bidding stage," communications chief Nasser Al Khater told delegates at the Soccerex Global Convention.

    We've always been confident of our position in the way we carried ourselves during the bidding stage

    Qatar 2022 organisers

    "Also, we're 500 people-strong working tirelessly day in and day out and I think that's an answer to the question."

    The other major issue surrounding the finals in Qatar is when they will actually take place.

    FIFA's task force on that subject met on Monday, while Europe's top clubs debated it again on Tuesday saying they needed "strong decisive reasons" for accepting the tournament will be played in the winter months of 2022 rather than the summer, which will disrupt the domestic European season.

    Winter break

    Meanwhile, the English Premier League should introduce a winter break as soon as possible and not wait until any change is forced on it by the expected winter World Cup in Qatar in 2022, according to the league's ambassador David Dein.

    Dein, a former vice-chairman of both Arsenal and the English FA who is still highly active in the game, told delegates that he had long advocated the break which, he felt, would reduce injuries and stress in the second half of the season.

    His view was backed by former England international Peter Reid who was speaking at another session at the convention.

    Although the exact dates for the 2022 World Cup have not yet been finalised, FIFA President Sepp Blatter said on Monday the World Cup would "definitely" be held in the winter months in eight years time.

    SOURCE: Reuters


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