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Tuesday Kickoff: FIFA proposes winter World Cup in Qatar; Strootman knee surgery complications; and more

FIFA headquarters


It’s looking ever more likely that FIFA will get its wish to hold a winter World Cup.

After many months of speculation and discussion, FIFA’s task force that’s putting together the official FIFA calendar for the years 2018-2024 met for the third and final time in Doha, Qatar, and proposed that the “most viable” time to hold the 2022 World Cup in Qatar is in November and December of 2022.

The task force noted that with the 2022 Olympics taking place in February, the Muslim holiday of Ramadan beginning in early April, and the harsh summer weather conditions in the country between May and September, that a World Cup beginning in November was the logical option.

The final dates of the competition will be determined at a further date. The proposal will be discussed and could be approved at FIFA’s next executive committee meeting on March 19-20 in Zurich, Switzerland.

In addition to determining the most viable time to host the 2022 World Cup, the task force also explored the possibility of having the 2021 Confederations Cup hosted by a different AFC nation, and having a winter-based competition, such as the 2021 Club World Cup, to serve as the test-run in Qatar for the World Cup a year prior to the event.

Here are some more stories to kick off your Tuesday:


A doctor formerly employed by AS Roma has casted doubt over whether Kevin Strootman will play again this season, or even at any future point in his career.

Strootman missed the World Cup last summer and a majority of this season recovering from a torn anterior cruciate ligament, and even after returning, Strootman had to go under the knife in January to repair more damage after suffering a set-back. After the second surgery, there’s no timetable for him to return.

“My impression is that the surgery on Strootman’s ligament did not go perfectly,” Brozzi has told La Partita Perfetta on Gold TV, via The Guardian. “I don’t know what happened to his knee, but his Cyclops syndrome results from a problem in the ligament’s position.

“The cartilaginous damage is determined by the extensive deficit. Now, if this is the situation, I see no way out. But it’s not up to me to say whether further surgery is needed.”

Strootman has only played seven times this season in all competitions since coming back from the original knee injury.


Veteran English manager Harry Redknapp has claimed that he’d be interested in returning to management next season after recovering from his knee surgery. (REPORT)

Real Madrid trained without Gareth Bale, Raphael Varane, and Dani Carvajal as they prepare to face Villarreal. (REPORT)

France will take on Germany in a friendly match on Nov. 13, 2015, at a yet to be determined location in France. (REPORT)

Italian courts will decide on March 19 whether Parma must declare immediate bankruptcy and forfeit the rest of their matches this season. (REPORT)

Olympique Marseille defender Nicolas Nkoulou will miss the next six to eight weeks after undergoing an operation. (REPORT)


What do you think of these reports? What do you think of the World Cup news and its various responses from around the globe? Do you see Strootman coming back to play this season?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. I don’t mean to derail the ignorance train with hate destination but…… Qatar is still building A/C cooled stadiums. The average temp there during Nov -Dec is in the high 80’s to low 90’s so there is no getting around the need to a/c those stadiums and nobody has even suggested such thing. Holding it in the “winter” will make for a better all around experience for those attending.

    • Where did you get the information they are building stadiums with AC. What I understand is the technology to make it work is only on paper. Even though I hate that it is Qatar the historical temps on Nov. 15th are 85 day and 67 night and on Dec. 15th they are 76 day and 59 night. Not terribly bad. Comparable to summer temps in a lot of US locations that would have hosted games.

  2. Correct me if I’m wrong, but wouldn’t this 2022 schedule fall right in the middle of MLS playoffs? So, what happens? Does the season start early to accommodate the schedule? We all know what a Jan/Feb start would mean for the East Coast this year – frozen tundras, etc.

    What a joke.

  3. “The task force noted that with the 2022 Olympics taking place in February, the Muslim holiday of Ramadan beginning in early April, and the harsh summer weather conditions in the country between May and September, that a World Cup beginning in November was the logical option.”

    I’m pretty sure all of this has been known for many years. No?

    • It’s just lip service, dude.

      FIFA execs have been paid, handsomely, and they don’t want to lose those fat checks, so they’re accommodating Qatar, bending over backwards is putting it nicely.

      Again, what a joke. FIFA is dumb.

    • The general concept to the Confed Cup is to give them a dry run with an international tournament of some stature. Is the stadium ready? etc. I’m not sure the modest Club World Cup is the same sort of event that would draw the same sort of crowds and create the same sort of testing pressure.

      One could view this as punitive, which might be called for.

      • ya it usually is. and nobody needs a “dry run” more than Qatar, how are those stadiums, airports, trains and hotels coming?

        just saying that they are going to be terrible hosts and I am glad to hear they are considering moving at least the Confed Cup. Plenty of nations in Asia that would benefit from hosting the 8 team cup. Also glad to hear they are not planning on instituting a Nov-Dec international break more than the 2022 year.

  4. There is only one man fit to run FIFA and it is I.

    Just imagine…Worldwide allocation re-entry drafts and no free agency.


  5. I heard that they want it now in November and December (Autumn) so it won’t interfere with the Olympics. Tit for Tat. I am still mystified as to how the issue of hot weather (okay dangerously hot weather) was supposedly over looked during the bid process. It just stinks to high heaven. I just wonder if the costs savings of not having to put in these magical air conditioning units will now wind up in a Swiss bank account for S.B. – SCREW FIFA!

      • It’s like they submitted the winning bid to build a mansion and then realized they could only build a hut — and will be allowed to do just that. Even without the bribery, human rights issues, etc., it’s ridiculously unfair.

  6. Grant, the grass is always greener on the other side. Americans need to stop crying sour grapes over this 2022 event. It’s embarrassing!!!

    If U.S. soccer and its fans can focus on winning, that is what matters.

    • Its embarrassing what FIFA has done and any Yank, Brit, Kraut, and anyone else who wants to voice concern can do so with vigor.

    • I hope you are not suggesting that Qatar won its bid on the merits. Its bid was by far the worst bid among all countries. It is not surprising that FIFA has to change the rules and take an unprecedented step of moving the WC to a different season. It has to do it because, it is dangerous to play the game in Qatar’s summer temperatures. However, the bid was based on a promise that open air stadiums would be cooled by yet non-existing state of the art cooling technology. Bribery issue aside, Qatar has failed to deliver on what it promised in its bid.

      • Personally I wanted Australia to host 2022 because their A League expresses growing interest in the sport and a World Cup could kick their decent domestic game up even a notch more. It would also reward an unusual host like Qatar without being silly.

        The USA hosted just 20 years ago, I didn’t necessarily take it as a good thing we finished second in the voting. I am sure we have the infrastructure and such but it to me tended to support rather than detract from a money talks argument.

      • I just want to go and I’m not going to Qatar. While having it here would be best, I’d love to go somewhere like Australia or Japan as well. Really anywhere but Qatar would’ve been acceptable.

      • One thing about the US hosting that should have made it a no-brainer over Qatar–when it was held here in 94 it set the all time attendance record which still stands. With greater interest now here and more big stadiums, such as Dallas, e.g., I’m certain that a WC here would have a lot more tickets than in 94 or anywhere else.

      • I doubt it… too few teams in Copa compared with 24 teams in 94 and the big german, british, irish, italian, african supporters.

      • i should clarify, i think there is a chance it could beat the average attendance record of 69,000.

        but yeah, the 3.6 million total attendance figure is out of reach for a tournament with only 16 teams. if there are 32 total games (24 game group stage, 4 game knock out stage, 2 game semi-final stage, 3rd place game, and final game), then an average attendance of 112,500 is required in order to tie the record. that isn’t happening.

      • I actually wanted Australia to win as well. It fit in to FIFA’s requirement of ‘Football Frontier’. Where a country has never hosted. I would have loved to travel to Australia!

  7. I guess Italy doesn’t have patient privacy laws… Amazing that a doc could talk so freely about a patient. You’d potentially lose your license here in the States doing that without a patient’s permission.

    As for what I think he’s saying, Strootman’s ACL graft was positioned too anteriorly. Because of that it is abnormally contacting the femur and blocking his full extension. I have no idea what he means by the cartilage damage, it could be from the initial injury or as a result of the poorly placed ACL graft. Sounds like Strootman needs his ACL revised +/- a cartilage procedure. 9+ month recovery… Sucks for him…

  8. I have to say that my interest in International Soccer has definitely diminished since 2010. I followed the BB USA team religiously! FIFA and the corruption, I guess I’ve had enough. I live in Europe and do enjoy club over Internationals even more now that it’s right in my face. The International breaks are more of burden now as it annoyingly interrupts the leagues. Man I’m just rambling, but was wondering if others felt this way as well. Has FIFA ruined International soccer and has the International game become boring?

    • I would say I’m in the exact same boat. I feel the Saturday to Friday games have also hampered my viewing on TV and being able to make it to any games that are relatively close to me. 02 – 06 – 10 I would make sure to catch every game that the US played since South Africa I’ve missed a handful of game, and each time it really not a big deal. I don’t really know what has changed, in my case anyway.

    • Don’t let the haters stop you from enjoying the most awesome sporting event in the history of humankind. When there is money or power involved every big organization will have its share of shady deals. Think NCAA, the U.S. Congress or even MLS which at a fraction of the size still manages to pull unethical (but legal) deals in a regular basis. What’s important is the games themselves, the people in the stands, the last minute goals the awesome goals…. Stop paying so much attention to the dealings off the field And just enjoy the World Cup for what it is, the only sporting event that’s truly shared by the whole world.

      • I couldn’t agree less. The things going on around, and in Qatars case directly supporting, the two upcoming world cups DO overshadow what happens on the field. Forced slave labor is a bigger issue than who wins the most games once every 4 years. The sovereignty of a countries borders, and lives lost when those are intentionally violated, are bigger issues as well.

    • The international breaks are actually a compromise of sorts. Teams can call up players but it’s only mandatory for games during the breaks. The rule could be, any time your country has a game, bye bye. But instead there are limited protected periods.

      One of the things I found most interesting when I lived abroad was the diversity of options. You can go watch some conference or lower league team just the same as EPL, and cheaper. The quality is less but it is also more “English” in feel and style, as the upper division is increasingly a cosmopolitan hybrid. To me the obsession with the top leagues is overdog worship, like the kid who is a Seahawks or Patriots (or ManU) fan when he lives somewhere else and has never been to the city or stadium he worships. Granted, you can watch some great soccer from the big clubs — and if you live in Europe like you say it is right in your face — but I enjoyed watching Fulham down in the second division before they blew up.

      I also think the big leagues plus regional tournaments (CL) are a constant hype machine and meanwhile World Cup is in its down ebb for the cycle. Of course club is more compelling at this point in the cycle.

      • I agree with a lot of that. When I lived in London, many a Saturday afternoon I’d head down to Barnet or some other little club because it was cheap and convenient.

        I still love international football though. FIFA is a disgrace of course but that doesn’t detract from the game on the field for me.

      • you “enjoyed watching Fulham down in the second division before they blew up’??? Huh. Their start to their first season back in the Championship was dire – no wins in their first 8 or 9 games and an insane coach. At least they win the occasional game now and then. They blew up when Shahid Khan purchased them. The only American owner to ever really ruin a premier league team and he gets almost no heat from the fans for it.

    • Personally, I’m a real nationalist and get more excited about watching a team representing my country than one representing my city. Also, as a player, what could be more awesome than representing your country in a tournament that happens only once every four years?

    • I agree with you Grant, but I would wonder how much your love for the National Team has changed since Jurgen came on the scene. I don’t feel the same way about this team as I once did… Jurgen has turned this into a farm team for b league foreign players and the results are no better. I just don’t feel the same “American” connection as I once did. And before people start blasting me, I know that the US team has always had foreign players, but it felt like they were “American” if that makes sense.

      I will say the nail in the coffin for my interest in international football was the draw for the next two World Cups. Russia is one of the most corrupt and racist countries on earth, who are invading neighbors and killing people yet they get to host a WC. No mention of that anywhere from FIFA. Don’t even get me started on Qatar… the terrorist ties, the heat, the oppression… It’s over for me.

      • Well it sure feels good to not be the only one that feels this way. I do understand what you mean about the current N; seems as if it’s not “Ours” anymore. The deaths in Qatar are severely being under-reported and that’s a disgrace! The tournament I’m really looking forward to is Copa America 2016.

        Also another reason I prefer club football/soccer now are definitely matches like tonight’s CL match; Juve/Dortmund and City/Barca. You have the best players in the world regardless of their nationality playing each other. These guys have trained with each other the entire season so their tactics and preparation is going to be at a higher level than the International game.

      • Grant, I’m sorry. You are in fact entitled to your opinion, but that does not mean you are right. Juergen Klinsmann, like all the players on the team, he is an American. He has a US passport, he is married to an American, and his kids are American.

        Facts are that deaths in QAtar are being reported by, not Qatari officials, but outside sources, humanitarian groups. India, one of the counties supplying workers, has recently said deaths among its citizens in Qatar is at a similar rate to deaths in India.

        Yet, you are all to happy to watch and support European club teams. It really does not make any sense, does it?

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