Ligue 1 president: Holding winter World Cup is 'the worst solution'

Wednesday February 25th, 2015

The president of France’s Ligue 1 says that starting the 2022 World Cup in November in Qatar is “the worst solution” because it would disrupt European club play. 

Frederic Thiriez noted that his league will only play a portion of its schedule before having to stop and then restart again in January.

“In the meantime, players will not play, the clubs will not make any money, the fans will be deprived of national competitions and television companies will be furious." Thiriez told Agence France-Presse.

FIFA has already said it will not compensate European clubs who will have their seasons interrupted by the tournament.

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The world’s governing soccer body says the November-December dates are “the most viable period" for the World Cup to avoid the Gulf state's summer heat as well as the Winter Olympics, which will be held in either Kazakhstan or China in February 2022.

Thiriez is just one of many critics who oppose starting the World Cup in November.

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.

Premier League chief Peter Scudamore said he was "very disappointed" in the decision, adding that the European clubs provided most of the players for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.

- Scooby Axson

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