There was controversy enough when the right to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup went – some would say under dubious circumstances – to Qatar, but further issues have recently arisen regarding the timing of the popular international football competition.

 

International scheduling restrictions have caused problems for event organisers, as it transpired there might be a clash between the World Cup and the Winter Olympics - the Games due to take place in the same year.

 

Image courtesy of Kate Lokteva on Flickr

 

Organised by the International Olympic Committee, the Winter Olympics bring enormous prestige to its host nation and, much like FIFA’s World Cup, the right to play host is highly coveted. This year the IOC executive board selected Oslo in Norway, Almaty in Kazakhstan and Beijing in China, though Oslo subsequently withdrew its bid.

 

The potential solution, recently tabled by FIFA themselves, is to hold the World Cup in November – leaving February clear for the Olympics to proceed as planned. On the face of it the solution is a good one... The World Cup is normally held over the summer months, but Qatar’s summer temperatures are far too hot for football. Holding the World Cup in November would get round that problem.

 

Image courtesy of Carlo de Marchis on Flickr

 

For ski and snow fans it could work out wonderfully, with the diary clear to make the most of the Games and all they bring. But many football fans are less than impressed, claiming a November World Cup would disrupt the start of the European football season badly.