The FIFA World Cup 2018 is yet to reach its conclusion in Russia, with dark horses Croatia set to take on France in the finals of the tournament. FIFA President Gianni Infantino has already confirmed that the next edition of the quadrennial extravaganza will be held in the winters for the first time ever. For the fans, it’s going to be a treat with Christmas clashing with football’s biggest event but for the leagues around the world, it’s a bad news.
As per reports, the FIFA World Cup which is usually staged during the middle of the year – in the months of June and July, will be for the first time conducted in the winters. Qatar will be hosting the 2022 FIFA World Cup which is reportedly going to take place between 21st November to the 18th of December.
The tournament will be a huge setback for several top leagues around the world as they will have to release a majority of the players for international duties. They will have to release the players weeks before the start of the World Cup. “Leagues around the world have been informed already, and of course they will have to adapt,” a statement by FIFA read.
The Christmas break is one of the busiest times for leagues around the world as the viewership and the match attendance witness a huge rise during the festive season. For the English Premier League majorly it will be a difficult task to cope up with the losses as England’s Premier division enjoys the highest viewership during the Christmas period.
FIFA vice-president Jim Boyce spoke in support of the winter tournament and said it will be a huge boost for the World Cup as the players will all be fresh and also the leagues will be disrupted for only three weeks once in four years. “I think it could be a tremendous World Cup because I think players will be fresher than they have ever been. It’s going to be 28 days, it’s not a lifetime. It means [domestic leagues] starting three weeks earlier and finishing three weeks later for one year,” said Boyce.