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Qatar May Lose 2022 FIFA World Cup in Wake of Epic Bribery Scandal
The 2014 World Cup starts in 10 days, so why are so many people talking about the 2022 World Cup? Because the 2022 World Cup is supposed to be in Qatar.
That’s right, I said Qatar, where the average high temperature in June and July—when the World Cup is played—is 106ºF.
Obviously, that seems like a really awful idea, but there is a perfectly good explanation for why Qatar was selected: bribery.
According to a story by the Sunday Times published this weekend, Mohamed bin Hammam, the disgraced former head of the Qatari Football Association, paid $5 million to various officials in the Confederation of African Football in exchange for their vote for Qatar. Some of those payments took the form of lavish junkets. Others took the form of stacks of cash in brown paper bags. But they all helped get Qatar the support needed to land the world’s biggest sporting event. (Sorry, Olympics.)
Bin Hammam had already been banned from international soccer by FIFA at the time of the alleged bribery, and Qatar Football insists he was not a part of their organizing committee and, thus, was not acting on their behalf. But that doesn’t really matter. Even corrupt d-bag FIFA president Sepp Blatter admitted that having the World Cup in the middle of the desert in the middle of the summer was a huge mistake. Everyone else already suspected that corruption was involved. And now, thanks to the thousands of emails and other documents obtained by the Times, we know how it all went down.
So what now? Well, obviously, the 2022 World Cup cannot be held in Qatar. Even if the average temperatures were not well over 100ºF, there have been a number of horrifying reports about the deplorable, slave-like conditions under which migrant workers are living (and dying) while they build the infrastructure for the event. FIFA just cannot be a part of that. It’s terrible PR.
In light of all this, FIFA vice president Jim Boyce has come out and said that, if the allegations in the Times prove to be true—and they will—then he would support a re-vote on the host of the 2022 event.
So sorry, Qatar. That sounds like the beginning of the end of your impossible dream…which just so happens to be everyone else’s nightmare.