Wednesday February 25th, 2015

FIFA says it won’t compensate European clubs who will have their seasons disrupted when players from their leagues participate at the World Cup in Qatar in 2022, reports Sky Sports.

UEFA, Europe's governing soccer body, told Sky Sports that it has suggested that the World Cup final be played on Dec. 23, which is a Friday. Every World Cup final since 1970 has been played on Sunday.

Nov. 26 has been discussed as a tournament start date and Dec. 18, a Sunday, is a possible end date.  Playing dates will be confirmed at a meeting of the FIFA executive committee in Zurich next month.

"There will be no compensation. There are seven years to reorganize. We are in agreement with the clubs,” FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke said.

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Valcke said 2022 World Cup will be 28 days instead of the usual 32 as a "concession" to the leagues and clubs. He also said that the Africa Cup of Nations in 2023 will be moved to June from January.

Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, the chairman of the European Clubs' Association, said moving the Cup to a November-December timeframe would cause "great damage" to domestic soccer because of the need to reschedule matches.

Valcke wasn't backing down despite criticism from some European clubs.

“I definitely don't feel I need to apologize,” Valcke said. "Why should I apologize to clubs?”

Valcke also said that awarding Fox Sports the television broadcast rights to the 2026 World Cup avoided possible legal action from the broadcaster, which has NFL and college football commitments during the time the 2022 World Cup will be played.

“We have done what we had to do in order to protect FIFA and to protect the organization of the World Cup and without any breach of any international rules on the business side of this negotiation,” Valcke said.

- Scooby Axson

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