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What should happen to the 2018 and 2022 World Cups?


The shockingly sudden resignation of Sepp Blatter as head of FIFA prompts a number of questions, many of which are a long way from being answered. Some will remain unanswered until the prosecutors and various police forces announce the results of various investigations, but practically there is now a major question that needs to be answered, as it may have precipitated the whole take-down:

What about the 2018 and 2022 World Cups?

Those events that brought to light the true depth of potential corruption and emboldened journalists to dig deeper into FIFA’s practices were to be, with the South Africa World Cup, the legacy of Sepp Blatter. These three World Cups were his attempt to bring the world’s game to the world – showing that countries outside the First World (and Russia) could be appropriate venues for such a spectacle. However, with Blatter gone in a cloud of disrepute, what should be done about the next two World Cups?

Although the process for replacing the FIFA president is still fluid, we have a point man for how the FIFA changes will begin. Domenico Scala, chair of the independent Audit and Compliance Committee, will begin implementing the changes to the Board as well as the organization’s management. In his speech to the media today, he gave some hints at what will be priorities, but mainly the focus was the structure of FIFA and the executive committee. Understandably, he is beginning reform at its absolute base but the question of the results of the corruption must be answered. In addition, making swift bold statements on the upcoming World Cups could send a powerful message to those watching to see if the reforms will be real – FIFA cares about transparency, to the point we will hurt ourselves to get things right.

What should be done about these World Cups? Practically, not much could be done about the 2018 World Cup. With the event three years away and Russia having already invested millions into preparing, to pull the World Cup out would be cruel to a nation that has already done so much advanced planning. However, that does not mean FIFA cannot threaten to do so and extra major concession from the host nation. For example, a clean FIFA should insist the Russian FA ensure a politically neutral event, open to all nations that qualify as well as the players of those nations. Much like the Socchi Olympics, Russia should ensure the World Cup is a free and open event to all, with no fear of reprisal for what is written or beliefs held. In addition, FIFA and UEFA should immediately send an independent audit committee to the FA offices to check the books and henceforth insist that any deals to prepare for the World Cup meet the high standards FIFA now holds itself to.

Qatar on the other hand should be immediately held open to a revote. The farce that was the biding process should be a sin confessed immediately and, as a mea culpa, FIFA should open the bidding process to all confederations. By creating a structure where clean confederations can propose 2-3 host nations each, and FIFA establishes a transparent process to consider each bid before naming a host, the machinations of the Qatar bid can be atoned for. Qatar can even resubmit a bid, and if selected, it will have exonerated itself through a clean process. To atone for the sacrifices made in the name of their mistakes, FIFA should dedicate the 2018 games to those who dies in Qatar and South Africa in the name of soccer.

By taking these two steps – forcing Russia to abide by an open and ethical World Cup, and revote on the 2022 tournament – can FIFA make a definitive statement that its reforms are real, and the governing body is capable of making the changes needed to manage the beautiful game.

Will all of this happen? I find it unlikely. However, last night I was sharing my opinion that Sepp Blatter would escape unscathed in these indictments. World soccer is changing quickly, and time will tell if this time it is truly for the better.


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  1. Trapttwice

    June 3, 2015 at 10:32 pm

    I don’t think that they should take a revote on either bids but I would use it to threaten Quatar to take it away if they don’t get their human rights in order

  2. Daniel Feuerstein

    June 3, 2015 at 8:46 pm

    I think it’s too late to revote on Russia 2018 as Qualifying has already started and went through first rounds in CONCACAF & Asia.

    Revote 2022 with the USA, Australia & or South Korea if these other two countries want it as well. 2026 either there will be new voting or maybe give it to England. They felt cheated by FIFA so many times and maybe this will help heal relations between the two entities.

    • B

      June 4, 2015 at 7:15 am

      I’m confused as to why the fact that qualification has already started prevents a change in location for the 2018 WC.

      There are several countries who are more than adequately equipped to host the tournament on a short notice and sticking with the dates already established by FIFA (14 June 2018 – 15 July 2018).

  3. Matt

    June 3, 2015 at 12:10 pm

    I think it’s bigger than the next two world cup bids. I hope this is the first step towards awarding countries who can already house World Cups with little to no additional construction required. These tournaments must not be used as some golden ticket that allegedly act as a mechanism for social and economic change in the host countries. These tournaments do more harm than good. Even in Brazil, a country that may adore this sport above all others, the stadiums sit empty, and will continue to do so.

    World Cups can be financially viable and beneficial for host countries, but only those who already have the mechanisms for hosting in place.

    • CTBlues

      June 3, 2015 at 12:57 pm

      If FIFA wants to put World Cups in the countries that don’t have the stadia then FIFA should pay for the new venues and other infrastructure in said country instead of making the local tax payers pay for it.

  4. Rick

    June 3, 2015 at 11:06 am

    World Cup 2022 should be in the USA- the last one in 1994 was a major success. Stadiums are ready and there will not be safety and human rights violations that we know are happening daily in Qatar.
    Do the right thing FIFA!

    • CTBlues

      June 3, 2015 at 12:55 pm

      We just have to make sure the cops don’t shoot anyone.

  5. CTBlues

    June 3, 2015 at 10:13 am

    I will be amazed if the locations for the next 2 WC’s changes. The thing I’m worried about now is if the Copa America Centenario is still going to happen next summer.

  6. B

    June 3, 2015 at 8:19 am

    I am desperately hoping that they rescind the Qatar WC. If they do, the nation that gets the tournament should do something to recognize all of the workers who have been killed building the stadiums and infrastructure in Qatar. Some kind of recognition, be it painted ribbons on the field, moments of silence before the games, etc.

  7. B

    June 3, 2015 at 8:04 am

    Not only should they strip the WC from Russia and Qatar, but strip their teams from being able to compete in the competitions as well.

    • Matt

      June 3, 2015 at 12:04 pm

      I think that’s a step too far.

      And it’s a bit redundant. It’s not like Qatar is going to qualify anytime soon…

  8. mark

    June 3, 2015 at 7:15 am

    Just the fact that Putin is creating turmoil in Europe these days, why should he be rewarded a World’s Cup? I don’t like to mix politics in sports, but this guy is deranged and this will hit him where it hurts.

  9. March

    June 3, 2015 at 1:52 am

    Give 2018 to Ukraine.

    • mark

      June 3, 2015 at 7:21 am


  10. Pakapala

    June 2, 2015 at 10:41 pm

    Listening to the narrative of the past few days you would think everything is clean and the world is all in order once you remove Blatter in power, stop small countries from voting for FIFA and take the World Cup rights away from Russia and Qatar and give them to the shining examples of clean bids and wonderful human rights records: USA and England.

    All you need to know about the hysteria that happened this past few days: The champion of transparancy and reform for FIFA according to Platini and his UEFA friends apparently is a prince from Jordan who has been the head of his country’s FA since he was the ripe old age of 23 and whose country has such a great record of democracy, fairness, transparency, and human rights.
    As for the head of UEFA, he is one of the 14 exco members to have voted for Qatar (when Blatter voted for US); His son somehow since then is enjoying a great job in Qatar. He backed up Bin Hammim for the FIFA presidency; He backed up the prince of another wonderful democratic country: Jordan for FIFA presidency. See a pattern here? Did I mention he’s gonna be head of UEFA for over a decade after having been voted into power last year unopposed, succeeding to a UEFA president who was in power for decades?

    Platini for FIFA presidency!!!

    • jtm371

      June 2, 2015 at 10:48 pm

      Platini would never take a stand vs Blatter no way vote him in. He is part of the problem. NO PLATINI!

    • Flyvanescence

      June 2, 2015 at 11:24 pm

      Sad but your sarcasm is mostly on point.

  11. gargoyle

    June 2, 2015 at 9:39 pm

    Putin is a despot who should not be rewarded with hosting the WC. During the season hardly a week goes by without some story about racist abuse from Russian club supporters. The only worse place to hold the WC is Qatar.

    2018 and 2022 need to be moved.

  12. Smokey Bacon

    June 2, 2015 at 8:35 pm

    If any of the DOJ or Swiss investigations leads to evidence of a tainted bidding process for either, then a re vote is the only solution. Russia and Qatar would be excluded and the world cups would go to one of the other bidders, assuming they still want it.

    • jtm371

      June 2, 2015 at 8:46 pm

      Smokey is spot on once again. +1 🙂

    • jtm371

      June 2, 2015 at 9:42 pm

      Smokey beware the russian and qatar mafia are hot on our tail with the down vote. 🙂

    • Flyvanescence

      June 2, 2015 at 9:59 pm

      Should the other nations found to be corrupt in their attempts togain those World Cups be excluded too? Blazer was a leader of the USA bid, just pointing that out.

      • jtm371

        June 2, 2015 at 10:23 pm

        No problem if blazer took bribes kick us out of holding WC.

        WC 2018 in Australia! 🙂

        • Flyvanescence

          June 2, 2015 at 10:36 pm

          Agree 100%. Just a lot of Americans seem to think our hands are clean in this mess.

          Eh id rather it go to a footballing nation. Australias like us. Soccer is at best the fifth sport. And theyve got their own MLS-style convoluted league just like us.

          Spain was bidding; let them have it. Awesome football culture there far more prepared than Brasil.

          • jtm371

            June 2, 2015 at 10:45 pm

            Agree it is not their #1 sport but it would be a hell of a good time. Great country and better people! 🙂

            England WC 2022! 🙂

            • Al

              June 3, 2015 at 11:39 pm

              If every country have dirty hand, give it to Canada. It would be the best World Cup ever.

      • Al

        June 3, 2015 at 11:27 pm

        You are spot on, England went to play game in Caribbean to won Jack Warner vote, do you really believe if it wasn’t for WC England would went to Trinidad and Tobago in summer to play a friendly game there? how many time did they went there to play before or after that. Every country do every thing they can to win it, but they have something to back it up like England have football history, Russia have football history to back their bid, US and OZ see the growing of football or soccer (however you call it)to back their bid.

        But what possible reason Qatar have to back their bid up, for me Qatar bought it, “fact”.

        Sorry for my English.

    • Brn442

      June 3, 2015 at 12:12 pm

      Has there been a WC in the last 20 years where the process hasn’t been tainted? I have no footballing problems with Russia hosting in 2018, tainted or not. For all Russia’s faults, it simply would not be fair to them this late in the process.

      Qatar in the other hand, made no footballing sense, plus – they mis-led the world, including sponsors and broadcasters, in their bidding process. Their grand plans of air-conditioned stadia disappeared once they won. There was no way, even with bags of cash, they would have Had a successful bid if it meant hosting a tournament in the middle of the European season..

      • Al

        June 3, 2015 at 11:36 pm

        Spot on, you say it better than me, for Qatar it make no sense. If you think Platini was one people who vote for them!

        Do really people still believe Michell Platini is good for FIFA?

        God help football

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