European leagues threaten legal action over Qatar World Cup

European leagues threaten legal action over Qatar World Cup
The 2022 Qatar World Cup is supposed to take place in June and July but has been moved to November and December due to searing heat in the Middle East.
BARCELONA: Europe's top leagues could launch legal action against FIFA over the decision to move the 2022 Qatar World Cup to later in the year, according to French league president Frederic Thiriez.

At a meeting in Barcelona on Saturday, the European Professional Football Leagues (EPFL) adopted a resolution slamming the decision to move the competition from its traditional dates in June and July to November and December in order to combat the searing heat in the Middle East.
"The EPFL is ready to support any legal actions that the individual leagues may take in this respect in the near future," said Thiriez.

"The EPFL is very disappointed with the decision of the FIFA ExCo, who decided to move the World Cup to November and December in 2022. This is seriously damaging to the European leagues, both from a sporting and a financial point of view.
"This decision raises serious questions about the motivations of many involved in the decision-making process and further demonstrated the lack of good governance within the national football governing bodies."

World governing body FIFA announced on Friday that it will triple the amount paid to clubs who release their players for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups to $209 million.

However, Thiriez said that the EPFL has to look out for the interests of all clubs, with the vast majority of the compensation promised going to only the top clubs in a few leagues.

"The EPFL has the responsiblity to protect the interests of all clubs, including those that do not release players for the national associations' competitions," he said. "Today the interests of those clubs are not protected."

The English Premier League, meanwhile, declared on Saturday that it was "very disappointed" by the decision to change the dates of the 2022 tournament.

"While we remain very disappointed with the process and the outcome for deciding the timing of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, at least we now have fixed dates to work with," the league said in a statement.

"The Premier League's sole focus now is ensuring that the impact on our season is as limited as possible. This means there is still some discussion and accommodation required over call-up periods, international dates and other competition organisers' schedules."