Former Netherlands midfielder and Qatar soccer advisor Ronald De Boer is pushing to have the World Cup moved to the winter. De Boer was instrumental in helping Qatar win the right to host the World Cup in 2022, and now he is arguing to the country’s leaders that the tournament should not be held in the sweltering heat of June or July as usual. Temperatures in Qatar’s capital city, Doha, typically reach into the 100s during the summer.
According to an AP report, De Boer said:
“A tournament like the World Cup can benefit from players not being so burned out after a long season,” De Boer said. “You have everyone well-adjusted and physically fit (in the winter), and get the best out of the players. So you see a better tournament. I think there’s a big possibility in that so why not try it?”
UEFA President Michel Platini, who is also a candidate to become FIFA president in 2015, is in favor of the move and already said he was willing to reschedule the European soccer schedule in order to accommodate a winter World Cup.
“In 10 years we can manage to decide how we can postpone the season for one month,” he said. “January is difficult for the World Cup because you have the Winter Olympic Games. If we stop from 2 November to 20 December it means, instead of finishing in May, we stop in June. It is not a big problem. It is for the good of the World Cup, the most important competition in the world.”