It might be 50-degrees in Qatar in summer, but the show must go on.
Football’s governing body appears to be edging closer to the decision to move the 2022 World Cup to the winter months, due to the bone-blistering heat of host nation Qatar in the summer. Here we present five reasons why this must not be allowed to happen.
1. Football at Christmas prevents family break-up
The British leagues are quite unique in cramming numerous matches into what they call a ‘festive schedule’. And on Boxing Day, thousands of men and women use football as the perfect excuse to avoid the mountains of leftover turkey and dried-up mince pies, the festering arguments over sod all and the never-ending small talk with the in-laws. By moving the World Cup, mothers would end up walking out on their children, fathers’ fists would damage their daughter’s hateful boyfriends, and British society would be irrevocably damaged for a generation.
2. It would cause yet more hardship for already struggling families
Some people will probably choose to actually go to Qatar to avoid the grief outlined above. Who can afford to go to Qatar? I don’t know even where Qatar is but it sounds bloody miles away.
3. Everything about football should be EXTREME
Given the coverage football gets – the portentous music, graphics of balls smashing through glass, commentary invoking life and death and the end of the world – the sport really ought to push itself to the limits properly. Shit or get off the pot. For those of us who’ve come to think of football as hugely serious and important, playing in extreme temperatures is the least we shoud expect. We demand to see footballers melting in Qatar’s 50-degree summer heat like that bloke from Raiders of the Lost Ark. Or at the very least, if you’re moving it to winter it has to be somewhere with a proper winter. Franz Josef Land 2022!
4. Your mate Dave will finally be right when he says football’s run by idiots
And he’ll never shut up moaning about it. During the two-year process of selecting the hosts of the 2022 World Cup, not one of the wise football brains of FIFA asked the question, “But isn’t it a bit hot there in the summer?” This is a standard of enquiry akin to deciding where you’re going to spend your two-week summer break based on a guidebook of Damascus you read in 1982.
5. Fans need a holiday from hate
Back in the day, fans would go to the home match of one team one week, and that of their rivals the following week, just for the pure enjoyment of the sport. Everyone got on, wore flat caps, ate pies and drank light ale. Now the automatic impulse of a football fan seeing a total stranger wearing a rival team’s shirt is to want them, their family, their unborn children, their pets, colleagues and ex-colleagues, and every one of their Twitter followers to die in a fire. This can be very tiring. Moving the tournament would inevitably extend the domestic season out in both directions and deny us all the peaceful period of soft drinks, salad and cricket that helps hold our fragile society together.
Image: Wikimedia Commons