FIFA have a lot to answer for on this one. But I guess it plays into the saying ‘money talks’.
Seriously, what do Russia and Qatar have to offer the biggest sporting event in the world? Money, sure, which can buy fancy stadiums (that will be pointless to these countries after the World Cup as after the celebration has passed, it will have been such a travesty that they will be banned from bidding for a future World Cup host nation place), but then what… that is all, really.
I will lay off Russia a little however as they have some superstars in soccer around the globe… Andrei Arshavin (Arsenal), Yuri Zhirkov (Chelsea) and Diniyar Bilyaletdinov (Everton) to name a few… I challenge you to name one slightly famous Qatar player… Can’t, can you?
I’m an Australian so all this may seem a little biased, but I would have gladly stepped aside if the U.S would have won the 2022 bid… or England, the ‘motherland’ of football, over Russia for the 2018 World Cup… unless it is being held somewhere in Oceania, the time difference doesn’t change that much for Australians and will always be in the wee hours of the morning.
I’m not very knowledgeable in politics of any sort but I imagine that there was some dirty business going on behind the scenes at FIFA… This confuses me though because nations (Australia included) openly bribed some of the voting representatives with pearl cuff-links, fancy champagnes and expensive dinners. Even that didn’t work as in the end, out of the four or five ‘promised’ votes to Australia, we ended up tallying one. Just one. This meant we weren’t even a chance to host the 2022 Cup and we got voted out in the first round. And if I’m not mistaken, England was voted out in the second round after Portugal & Spain (which was a stupid bid for them as they hosted the a cup competition in 2010, possibly 2012 – I’m trying to draw from my own knowledge without research and it turns out I’m a little shotty)
Anyway, the point is, is that FIFA has a lot to answer for! Australia has proven itself to host world tournaments (e.g Rugby World Cup, 2004 Olympics etc.) and draw large, capacity crowds with sufficient, if not expectation-exceeding broadcasting standards and quailty. And with all the information and research FIFA carried out on all the bidding nations, I believe Australia showed to have the second highest possible financial income behind the U.S; Qatar was last.
And Russia (I’ll take one more stab at them because I can), how far would you like to travel between stadiums… At least England is only a few hours from top to bottom, and they already have the stadiums to hold the competition… Hell, give ‘em the 2014 Cup, they’re ready before Brazil is.
All I can say to summarise my points made above is in 2018, I hope you (I am talking to only Sepp Blatter now) enjoy having your testicles frozen off and your car/bus/transport breaking down, resorting you to walking then only to be attacked by a bear and hostile moose (plural)… and once you have taken four years to recover this terrible ordeal, in 2022, you enjoy all the sand in your vagina and I prey that by this time, scientists have developed a way to create camel-like eyelash layers for human, cause you’ll need them if you want to go watch a game of beach soccer (which is what this competition will become over there).