The upcoming World Cup in November this year in Qatar is easily one of the greatest scandals in the history of football. The tournament itself has been solely built on human rights abuses, death and pure corruption, when it is supposed to be football’s ‘magnum opus’ and more importantly – a game that is branded as all-inclusive. It would be seen as a slap in the face to every family of the migrant workers who have been abused, or even died, while building the stadiums to host this mess of a tournament.Embed from Getty Images
There is a plethora of problems with this tournament that would most likely make up several other pieces, such as the terrible idea of a World Cup in the winter where fans will be lobbing mugs of hot chocolate rather than pints of beer in pure euphoria after their country score a goal. Or, even how the lagging football culture in Qatar hardly justifies them hosting such a prestigious tournament. But, it should be made well aware that these are huge factors regarding the hosting of this year’s World Cup.
The first of many disruptions this tournament will cause, is the impact on the European leagues. This is because a large portion of the players involved will represent European clubs. UEFA is by far the most-represented confederation at the tournament, with 13 of the 32 nations from Europe, and many of the players from other countries have their day jobs there too. With the tournament being hosted in the winter months, it will most likely mean that the ‘big six’ leagues with the vast majority of their players having to leave for two months will lead to a halt on the season.
For example, with the Premier League having some of the best talents from across the globe most likely going to the World Cup in the middle of the season, some teams might be unable to field a full team. The bulk of the players at the 2022 World Cup, unless there is a violent power shift in the next 8 months, will play for European sides, and a switch to a winter tournament will mean they have to start the season, stop halfway through and play what will be for many the most important competition of their careers, then go back and finish their domestic campaigns.Embed from Getty Images
Another key issue is that homosexuality is illegal in Qatar. The argument about if the world’s biggest sporting event should be held in such a country, should end there. In the modern-day society which we all live in, these attitudes should simply not be tolerated, let alone shamed by law, but obviously FIFA doesn’t take these concerns seriously, they just care about the money they receive from the hosts. Sepp Blatter said in a press conference, when asked about what gay people should do if they want to go to Qatar (as per the BBC), that they should “refrain from sexual activity.” With that attitude, is it any wonder Qatar got the tournament so easily? Maybe that is why we only have one openly gay footballer in men’s football, Australian defender, Josh Cavallo. However, the number of sportsmen and women revealing their sexuality is increasing, and you have to ask yourself, would they be welcome? Would they feel they could travel to a country so obviously opposed to their lifestyles? In all probability, there’s absolutely no chance.
Realistically, not one participating country will boycott the World Cup. It’s just too important and historical to not want to have the dream of playing in the tournament, let alone winning it. But, if players are brave enough to speak out against the horrific conditions, then we could see FIFA finally take them into consideration, when looking at future hosts.Embed from Getty Images