FIFA website for sale

Football lover promises huge return on investment for 'FIFA 2022' Qatar World Cup website, but whether Sepp Blatter will let this one slide is another matter.

    As all fairytales start...

    Once upon a time - in Doha in the Middle East...

    The sun rose, the birds were singing, traffic was free-flowing and Qatar was waiting to host the World Cup in 2022. 

    There I was, minding my own business. When suddenly - dot dot dot dot.

    Producer - please cue dramatic music!

    I was searching for a second-hand laptop on the net, when dramatic music at full volume please.

    Historical Football Blogger site for Sale!

    That's what the ad read on a popular Qatar-based website.

    It was just one of hundreds of items for sale. The advert was posted just minutes before it grabbed my attention.

    The website's going price is 350,000 Qatari Riyals - about USD $96,000.

    And for those of you who are interested in the South African Rand value - R700,000.

    If you have that amount of cash lying around, the genius (and I use this term quite loosely) who came up with the idea of a Qatar 2022 World Cup website, wants to sell the domain to you.

    Ten times the price

    He reckons it will be worth 10 times that price in 11 years' time.

    Much to my disappointment - there is nothing historic about this site -

    Anyone else hear the alarm bells yet?

    I couldn't contain my interest and logged onto the site.

    There were plenty of photos, uploaded videos and other FIFA bits and bobs.

    More alarm bells!

    It wasn't long before I rang the owner up. Of course it came as no surprise that he was negotiable on that price.

    When I asked if he wasn't scared of FIFA's lawyers "taking the site down" - or if he was confident of selling it before FIFA President Sepp Blatter's guys pounced - he said: "No, it's a common name (Qatar 2022 Fifa World Cup), you see?"

    The owner of this website is someone called Andrew Ruben from India, or so he says. I'd like to believe that he gave me his real name - seeing as I brought him down to 300,000 QAR - a truckload of money in anyone's book.

    Andrew asked where I was from. "Joburg," I said. "I've never heard of that country," he replied. Still, he was confident we were in business.

    In my mind this deal would play itself out like a scene from a 70s mafia movie.

    We meet in a dark alley, both dressed in thick, long coats and both flanked by bodyguards. I hand over a briefcase, he gives me an envelope with the passwords.

    And we all live happily ever after.

    On a more serious note - I am not sure if Andrew knows, but the world football governing body is very precious about its name and any sort of reference to the football events they stage across the globe.

    In South Africa last year FIFA's lawyers were busy stopping shopkeepers from selling World Cup lollipops, and they even threatened a Bloemfontein restaurant owner who was selling his breakfast for R20,10.

    It might seem like a brilliant entrepeneurial opportunity for Andrew. He is obviously out to make a quick buck. I mean, why else would he promise in his advert that anyone who bought it could easily make 3.5 million QAR in 2022?

    But I know FIFA's lawyers won't take this matter lightly.

    In fact - they're reading this blog right now (and probably plotting the website's demise). I patched a call through to their headquarters in Zurich, Switzerland and asked them to read it. Mainly because I'd like Sepp Blatter to become a regular reader of my columns.

    I don't think I'm wrong on this one, but the name FIFA is sacred. You can't so much as whisper it without raising the suspicions of FIFA's legal eagles.

    And I believe it's only a matter of time until they find Andrew Ruben from India - now living in Qatar - and....

    I shudder to think what they'll do to him.

    Uncle Sepp - I am appealing to you. Andrew means no harm. He's just trying to promote your tournament in this country 11 years from now - albeit in an unorthadox way.

    Please don't hurt him... where it hurts the most, I mean.

    His pocket!


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