FIFA’s official investigation into the World Cup bidding process for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments in Russia and Qatar has been delayed until September of this year.
Initially due to be submitted during this month, FIFA’s ethics committee now say they expect the report to be ready in the first week of September 2014.
The 2022 World Cup in Qatar has been shrouded in controversy, with this investigation targeting former FIFA vice-president, Mohamed bin Hammam, who has been alleged to pay over £3m to officials for their support of the Qatari bid in The Sunday Times.
Qatar had very little in the form of developed World Cup appropriate stadia, especially compared to the more established bids from Australia, the United States and Japan. Qatar also promised radical ways of overcoming temperatures that can often sore to over 50°C (over 120 °F), such as air conditioned stadium, which has since been thought impossible to achieve.
Beyond this, numerous reports of several workers dying in the World Cup construction process has raised questions not just over the World Cup’s location, but the nation’s labor laws as a whole. Cultural differences to much of the footballing world have also raised concerns about the eligibility of the country.
If there were negative findings within this report, one could suggest that releasing this information in September, rather than just after the hugely successful World Cup in Brazil could well soften the blow. However, theories aside, this delay does absolutely nothing to help FIFA’s already abject image. With FIFA vice-president Jim Boyce and former attorney general Lord Goldsmith being among a host of people calling for the re-run of the 2022 vote, and UEFA’s own Michel Platini being very critical of FIFA, delaying the findings of this process will only intensify the calls for action from people all across the sport. Rightly so, we say.
You can follow Jordan Willis on Twitter @JMWillis01.
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