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ESPN FC Posted by ESPN staff
Sep 20, 2013

FIFA, IOC to talk over 2022 World Cup

It's taken three years, but it looks like the football world is coming round to the idea of a winter World Cup in Qatar.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) plans to hold discussions with FIFA to make sure the 2022 World Cup finals in Qatar do not clash with the Olympic Winter Games that year.

On Thursday, UEFA's 54 member associations gave their backing to hold the 2022 finals during the winter as to avoid the extreme heat of the state's summer.

However, an IOC spokesman said talks will be sought with world football's governing body to ensure both tournaments will be held at separate times during the winter months.

"We were aware that FIFA might consider changing the dates for the 2022 World Cup," the IOC spokesman said. "We are confident that FIFA will discuss the dates with us so as to coordinate them and avoid any effect on the Winter Games."

It is expected that FIFA's executive committee will confirm the decision to move the World Cup from the summer to the winter in a meeting taking place in Zurich on October 3.

Reaction from the IOC has proved another stumbling block for FIFA; while Sepp Blatter and co do not have to accommodate or take into account the Winter Games, they would risk upsetting the organisation, which has the power to expel football from the Summer Games list.

FIFA is keen to hold the finals in either November or December, but UEFA and British associations would prefer the tournament to be held in January so not to disrupt Champions League proceedings or the pre-Christmas schedule.  

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