Multiple sources say it's a done deal that World Cup 2022 will take place in November and December of 2022 in Qatar. A FIFA task force will meet in Doha next week and make that recommendation, and the FIFA Executive Committee is set to make the decision final at its meeting in Zurich next month.
The current plan is for only one European club season to be impacted schedule-wise, which the clubs are hoping to achieve by cutting some international dates. One key question is what to do about Confederations Cup the year before, but the big World Cup decision has been made. Set your calendars for November-December of 2022.
FOX granted World Cup TV rights through 2026
FIFA on Thursday granted the media rights in the U.S. and Canada for its tournaments through 2026 to Fox and Telemundo.
Here are a couple of more insider notes from the soccer world:
MLS CBA talks go on
MLS labor talks continued in New York on Wednesday. FC Dallas goalkeeper Dan Kennedy, who is on the players union executive board, said this week is about trying to get all the non-strike issues out of the way so that the two sides can leave the final two weeks before the season for the main sticking points. Those two key issues are the salary structure and free agency.
A federal mediator will be involved for those big issues
, just as one was involved five years ago to help reach an agreement right before the start of the season in 2010.
The players say they’re united and will go on strike if they don’t get free agency, but one team executive says he expects some high-salaried foreign players may want their paychecks and threaten that unity.
Addition to women's club landscape
One new event that’s expected to be made official at next month’s FIFA Executive Committee meeting is the start of a new FIFA Women’s Club World Cup. The tournament would start in 2017. Not only should it help grow women’s soccer, but it would provide an annual global competition involving many of the top women’s players that’s missing right now.
Details have yet to be finalized, such as how many teams will be involved and how many from each continent, but you can be certain that U.S. teams will be involved and may potentially host the tournament.
Have Hope Solo's controversial decisions finally caught up with her?
On SI Now, Sports Illustrated senior writer Grant Wahl talks about Hope Solo being suspended by US Soccer for thirty days and how Solo and USWNT can move forward after her punishment is over.