6 Ridiculous Ideas to Resolve the Qatar 2022 World Cup Debacle
The 2022 World Cup is a big mess.
FIFA President Sepp Blatter has admitted that awarding the tournament to the Gulf state of Qatar may have been a mistake and said he now backs the idea of a winter tournament.
The Swiss leader wants executives to vote on a schedule switch at a meeting in Zurich this week, but he is facing stiff opposition from UEFA President Michel Platini, who is not relishing the prospect of having Europe's major domestic leagues disturbed.
It's time to start thinking outside the box.
B/R has come up with some extremely sensible (though probably unrealistic) solutions to the debate, so let's hope FIFA is reading.
Block Out the Sun
As billionaire tyrant Mr. Burns showed us in The Simpsons, it is entirely possible to block out the sun for an entire town.
Monty B did it for the sinister reasons of making citizens use more of his energy resources, so why not do the same thing for the sinister reason of hosting a World Cup in a completely unsuitable country?
Qatar is almost 4,500 square miles, so if it builds a shield big enough, it could easily block the sun's powerful rays and create a climate that's just about cool enough to play some football.
Best of all, the whole episode may also inspire a highly entertaining "Who Shot Mr. Blatter" scenario.
Build All the Stadiums Underground
Rather than constructing ultramodern stadiums that feature yet-to-be-invented cooling technology, why not solve the pesky problem of the stifling heat by building everything underground?
Qatar has already flirted with the idea of the world's first underground stadium in "The Wall," but that design is still open air and susceptible to the sun's rays.
It should bury the stadiums underground and maybe even hollow out a few volcanoes for the full Bond-villain effect.
Let's not stop at stadiums either; let's build the entire transport infrastructure under the surface so pasty visitors never have to risk seeing daylight.
By building another layer underground, Qatar would effectively be doubling its land mass. It makes so much sense.
Stage a Competition Between the Bidding Host Nations
Australia, South Korea, Japan and the United States all submitted unsuccessful bids for the 2022 event.
If the tournament is taken away from Qatar in a sudden bout of logic and reasoning, it would presumably fall to one of the runners-up.
But which nation should get to host? The United States, which accrued the second-highest amount of votes, you say? No, that would be boring.
The losing bidders should be entered into a competition to decide—but not a regular football tournament between the national teams.
Each nation would have to select a group of fans to play a Soccer AM-style car-park game. The nation to score the most in 60 seconds wins. Simple.
Host It at Multiple Venues
In a bid to show the world that UEFA values money-making schemes over fan experience or sporting legacy, Michel Platini is proposing that Euro 2020 should be held across multiple venues in Europe.
If an appropriate host city cannot be decided upon from the bidding short list, then choose multiple cities. If each of the 64 games is hosted in a different country, FIFA could make a phenomenal amount of money.
Which is all that really matters, right?
Perhaps Italy could play its first group game in Sydney, then its second in Madrid four days later. Players wouldn't know what day of the week it was, but think of the marketing possibilities!
With this solution, everybody wins. Except the people who like football. But why should they get a say?
Build FIFA Its Own Nation
When FIFA rolls into town with a major tournament, it likes to bring its own police, its own government and its own set of rules.
Brazil is currently trying to do battle with FIFA, which wants to appease its sponsors by serving alcohol at World Cup stadiums—despite the fact that this is illegal in the host nation.
So, if FIFA wants to form its own ruling state during tournaments, let's give it one.
An artificial island could be constructed in international waters—in the style of The Palm in Dubai—with stadiums, accommodation and enough overpriced beer to keep the captive audience of supporters in a merry stupor for a month.
It could be called Worldcupland. Or Worldcupland in association with Adidas, Coca-Cola, Emirates, Hyundai/Kia, Sony, Visa, Budweiser, Castrol, Johnson & Johnson and McDonalds.
By awarding the World Cup to a host nation without really exploring the tremendous geographical and political stumbling blocks, FIFA has gotten itself into quite a pickle.
If it proceeds with the tournament, the health of players and fans may be at risk. If it moves it to winter, the European domestic leagues will be furious, as will the litigious rival bidding nations.
The most practical solution is just to stop football.
The problem with the beautiful game is that it never really ends: As soon as a team wins a trophy, it is put back up for grabs in a matter of months. There's no closure. It's a bit like a Samuel Beckett play.
Let's all just decide that football will end in 2018. The winner of that World Cup will be declared the winner of football. Forever.
FIFA could simply move into a different business, like telemarketing or construction.
It really is the best solution to allow us all to carry on with the rest of our lives.
Follow Ryan Bailey on Twitter.