In the world’s worst kept secret, FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke said today that the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar would not be played in the summer.
In an interview with a French radio station, Valcke said:
“The dates of the World Cup will not be in June or July. I think it will be played between November 15 and January 15 at the latest.
“If you play between November 15 and, let’s say, the end of December, it’s the time when the weather is the most favorable.
“You play with a temperature equivalent to that of a rather hot spring in Europe, you play with a temperature of 25 degrees (Celsius), which is perfect to play football,”
However, once news spread of Valcke’s comments, FIFA vice-president Jim Boyce was shocked by Valcke’s mention, and said that only FIFA’s executive committee could decide when the tournament would be played.
FIFA quickly backtracked by stating that a decision has not been reached yet, and that the announcement wouldn’t be made until after FIFA World Cup 2014 this summer.
However, despite reports that FOX Sports was opposed to World Cup 2022 being switched from summer to winter — and that FIFA had held secret talks with FOX Sports late last year, it appears extremely likely that FIFA World Cup 2022 will be played in November and December 2022. The only step that’s remaining is for FIFA to rubber stamp the decision at their next Executive Committee meeting.