And so the nonsense continues.
The latest press reports surrounding the 2022 FIFA World Cup—how many other decade-away events generate this much coverage and controversy?—indicate that the tournament could well now take place in winter, after UEFA nations gave their backing to such a move, as per BBC Sport.
Well, that seems to be the spin being put on things. What FIFA vice-president Jim Boyce has actually been quoted as saying is:
What has come out of this meeting is that the World Cup cannot be played in Qatar in the summer. Everyone was certainly in agreement about that.
Hardly a ringing endorsement that the World Cup needs to therefore stay in Qatar and simply the tournament timing needs to be changed, though.
How many more ridiculous meetings, announcements and debates are going to come about over the next decade as a result of FIFAs continued ineptitude and tomfoolery?
The World Cup is the World Cup.
It's a summer tournament.
Nearly a century of football fans, players and coaches will have enjoyed it as such up to when the Qatar edition is scheduled to take place, and yet such small details as the weather and playing conditions apparently weren't taken into account prior to the vote to find this host.
Are we to believe that the game's governing body only realised the potential for problems after Qatar's bid was revealed to be the winner?
A cynical fan—or any fan with more than half an open eye on the organisation's perceived errors—might suggest that the economic strength of the bid was more likely to be a contributing factor on why FIFA selected them. Yet other countries, with proven records of successfully hosting major sporting tournaments—Australia, the United States, South Korea—were ruled out or lost.
Only to then find, of course, that the parameters were changed.
A winter World Cup? That's news to the bidding nations.
Australia are reportedly considering suing FIFA, as per the Guardian, and perhaps rightly so. They spent years of time and close to $50 million during a global recession to try and host a tournament, yet were never informed that a change of timing during the year might be a possibility.
And why wouldn't others follow suit?
The host of the World Cup automatically qualifies for a prestigious tournament, after all. Why wouldn't Brazil have wanted to host the tournament perhaps during their own National championships, when home-based players were at peak fitness and mentality?
If nations can suddenly pick and choose when it's convenient to host the World Cup, perhaps England would want to host one in early November? USA at the end of their season rather than a few months after it begins?
FIFA continue to document the long-term buildup to the 2022 World Cup with a catalogue of errors, mistakes and back-tracking, not least of all Sepp Blatter's own admission that awarding the World Cup to Qatar could be a mistake.
And yet, football's governing body remains completely unaccountable to anybody, anything, anywhere.
With nine years still to go until the 2022 World rolls around, one can only imagine the scope for further hilarity and embarrassment that the organisers will come up with, before possibly the greatest sporting competition the world has ever seen is moved from its timeless position as a matter of convenience, economics and all-round farcical behaviour.