Asian Football Confederation (AFC) President Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa has repeated his claim the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar will be held in November and December on the eve of a meeting where a date will be proposed.
Sheikh Salman is the head of the FIFA Task Force which is set to decide on the date of the competition tomorrow in Doha, with the FIFA Executive Committee set to rubber stamp the proposed dates in March.
He was quoted in January as saying the "matter is resolved", indicating that the 2022 World Cup will be scheduled in November and December, with the tournament requiring a winter move owing to the searing summer temperatures in the Gulf.
With the prospect looking likely, it would be a major source of relief to International Olympic Committee (IOC) with regard to the 2022 Winter Olympics, which will be held in either Almaty in Kazakhstan or Chinese capital Beijing.
It had been feared that the World Cup could be held in February, clashing with the February 4 to 20 dates proposed by both candidates.
Salman told the BBC today "we don't want it to collide during that period".
He added: "But I think everybody agrees that in January or February it's difficult to play for the reasons that I mentioned before [Winter Olympics clash].
"The only option I see is November/December."
While the prospective rubber stamping of a November and December World Cup would be met positively by the IOC, Europe's major football leagues remain deeply opposed to the prospect of a winter World Cup.
They argue that a winter competition forces them to break with the traditional calendar and disrupt the lucrative UEFA Champions League, while they also maintain that Qatar had proposed to hold a summer World Cup in the bidding process for the competition.
The European leagues look set to attempt a final bid to convince FIFA to stage the World Cup in May, close to the traditional dates of June and July, which would therefore have only a limited effect on their calendars.
With the discussion over the 2022 World Cup bid set to take centre stage in Doha this week, the outcome could have implications in the race for the FIFA Presidency, with Prince Ali bin Al-Hussein of Jordan, Royal Dutch Football Association President Michael van Praag and former Portugal star Luis Figo having officially launched their bids in the past month.
All three began their campaigns by calling for greater transparency from the governing body, with Ali asserting that the report headed by Michael Garcia into alleged corruption in the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bidding process should be published in full, while Figo has said: "if there are no irregularities proven, I don't think Qatar should be prejudiced".
Current FIFA President Sepp Blatter is seeking re-election for a fifth term and is widely considered as the runaway favourite.
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