It’s been a while since someone publicly criticized FIFA’s decision to move the 2022 World Cup to winter instead of summer, a huge corruption scandal can kind of put that on the back burner. Now that the FIFA corruption scandal has calmed down a bit, we can talk again about the absurdity of putting the 2022 World Cup in Winter.
La Liga has become the latest group to be upset about FIFA’s decision to move the Qatar World Cup to winter and according to as.com (Spanish), are filing a lawsuit against FIFA to the Court of Arbitration for Sport for that very reason.
La Liga, or the LFP, claim that independent reports tell them that they will lose 65 million Euros if the World Cup gets moved from summer to winter. A separate proposal to make the tournament from May to June which also avoided Ramadan and would cause the least disruption to all leagues that operate on a winter schedule was rejected.
While no league has sued FIFA for the date change, there have been instances where FIFA had to make deals to avoid issues. For instance, because moving the World Cup to winter hurt them with having NFL Football, FOX was given a deal to buy the TV rights to the 2026 World Cup. FIFA’s Secretary General Jerome Valcke even said the deal was made “to avoid facing a lawsuit.”
I can’t say this is a real shock that La Liga is suing FIFA. With other leagues like the Bundesliga and Serie A supporting the idea but not necessarily the lawsuit, the most likely scenario is to not really expect anything to happen in terms of La Liga forcing FIFA to actually move the 2022 World Cup back to the summer or in May. If anything, this is a move to try to get some sort of deal like FOX’s deal with FIFA about the 2026 World Cup. La Liga will be the latest to tell FIFA, “If you’re going to cause headaches for everyone by moving the World Cup to winter, you’re going to have to earn it” and “take care” of those who have to change things.