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Thursday, 22 October 2020

Qatar World Cup official upbeat on FIFA election loss

Hassan Al-Thawadi says Qatar's preparations for 2022 World Cup will not be affected by his failure to join FIFA executive committee

Reuters, Thursday 2 May 2013
FIFA World Cup 2022
Sheikha Moza Bint Nasser al-Misnad, wife of Qatar's Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al Thani (L), holds a copy of the World Cup he received from FIFA President Sepp Blatter (R) after the announcement that Qatar is going to be host nation for the FIFA World Cup 2022, in Zurich December 2, 2010. (Photo: Reuters)
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Qatar's 2022 World Cup organizing chief Hassan Al-Thawadi says his defeat in an election to join the FIFA executive committee won't damage tournament preparations.

A seat on FIFA's decision-making board would have strengthened Qatar's ability to protect its interests ahead of the tournament, especially if the idea of moving to winter dates is discussed. However, Al-Thawadi says "it's not a blow at all" because "previously we didn't have members" on the 25-strong FIFA panel.

The Asian Football Confederation on Thursday voted for its newly elected president, Sheik Salman bin Ibrahim Al Khalifa of Bahrain, to also take the vacant FIFA spot ahead of Al Thawadi.

The elections formally replaced Mohamed bin Hammam, who FIFA first suspended in May 2011, six months after helping his native Qatar win 2022 hosting rights.

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