UEFA chief Platini pushes ahead with plans for winter World Cup in Qatar in 2022
12:27 GMT, 25 September 2012
UEFA president Michel Platini is determined to hold the 2022 World Cup in Qatar during the winter and force the Barclays Premier League to take a break during November and December to accommodate it.
FIFA's decision to award football's greatest showpiece to the tiny Arab state has attracted derision due to the difficulties it will place on supporters and teams alike if held in the searing heat of the summer months, when the tournament is traditionally staged.
Platini's solution is to break with tradition and stage the tournament during the winter, which will clash with the regular club season across Europe.
Feeling hot, hot, hot: The World Cup 2022 will be held in Arab state Qatar
Grand plans: How one of the stadiums will look in the capital Doha in 2022
But the Frenchman is adamant that forcing clubs in England and across the continent would not be a problem as the leagues could simply finish a month later than usual.
He also suggests that the tournament could not go ahead in January 2022 because of a potential clash with the Winter Olympics.
Platini said in the Standard: 'I hope it (the 2022 World Cup) will be held in winter. We have to go to Qatar when it is good for everybody to participate. What is better for the fans
'Did you see in South Africa It was freezing and nobody could go anywhere to a fan club or anything. You had to stay in the hotel.
'In 10 years we can manage to decide how we can postpone the season for one month.
'January is difficult for the World Cup because you have the Winter Olympic Games.
'If we stop [the European season] from November 2 to December 20, it means, instead of finishing in May, we stop in June.
'It is not a big problem. It is for the good of the World Cup, the most important competition in the world.'
On screen: UEFA president Michel Platini, at a conference for European national team coaches in Warsaw on Monday, wants a break with tradition
FIFA's executive committee made the shock decision to hand Qatar the staging rights in a vote in December 2010 that also saw Russia awarded the 2018 tournament, ahead of England and other bidders.
World football's governing body later became embroiled in a far-reaching corruption scandal that saw several high-profile executives removed from office in disgrace.
But Platini defended the outcome of the vote, saying it was the right outcome and that he would vote for the country again if he had the chance.
The former France and Juventus star also played down suggestions there could be a re-run of the election in the wake of the FIFA scandal.
'To revoke World Cup decisions will be difficult. And, if there is another vote, I will vote the same way: for Russia and Qatar,' he said.
'I voted for Qatar because it was time to go to a country in that part of the world. They bid five times.'
Platini also refutes the suggestion that he voted under instructions of the then French president, Nicolas Sarkozy: 'No, no, no. I tell you one thing immediately. One day I was invited to dinner by Sarkozy where there was the Prime Minister of Qatar.
'Mr Sarkozy never asked me during the dinner to vote for Qatar. They invited me to the dinner but they know I will be independent, that I will vote for who I want.'