FIFA Task Force Recommends 2022 Qatar World Cup Be Played in November, December

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FIFA's Task Force for the International Match Calendar 2018-24 has confirmed November and December is the "most viable period" for the 2022 Qatar World Cup to be held.
The governing body confirmed the "proposed event dates have the full support of all six confederations," per an official release on its website. BBC Sport's Richard Conway tweeted the organisation's press release, which confirms six months of discussions have led to a winter tournament being outlined as the most likely.
Conway reports that Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al-Khalifa "ruled out May," per BBC Sport. Martyn Ziegler of the Press Association highlighted the obstacles in FIFA's way when planning for the competition.
Such timing would significantly disrupt the European club football season. While countries such as Spain and Germany are used to including winter breaks in their calendar, England's Premier League becomes busiest through Christmas.
This season, most clubs competed in five league fixtures in the two-week run to Jan. 1, with cup commitments also interspersed around these matches. Such a crammed run is already a topic of much debate, with Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal among those "not happy" with the congestion, per Stuart Mathieson of the Manchester Evening News.
Premier League Chief Executive Richard Scudamore issued a statement following the announcement on the World Cup's impact on the holiday fixtures:

"We are extremely disappointed with the FIFA Task Force recommendation to move the 2022 FIFA World Cup to a November and December schedule.
"It is clear that the views of the European leagues, along with the numerous other competitions globally that will be negatively affected, have not been given serious consideration throughout this process.
"The prevailing view from the leagues has been that displacing the 2022 World Cup significantly from the original summer dates disproportionately impacts the sporting integrity of our competitions.  
"Our particular concern is that a FIFA World Cup that finishes late in December could result in damaging one of the English game’s great traditions and attractions, with the removal of the entire Premier League, Football League and FA Cup Christmas and New Year fixture programme that season.
"Clearly there is still time within the process to consider our position further, but first we will consult with our clubs, other stakeholders in English football, and other leagues before deciding on what, if any, further action might be appropriate or worthwhile."
Bayern Munich chairman Karl-Heinz Rumenigge commented on the recommendation, according to Bayern's official website:

"Today's recommendation of the Task Force regarding the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar [not to stage the finals in the summer of 2022] does not come as a surprise; it was rather expected.
For the football family the rescheduling of the 2022 FIFA World Cup presents a difficult and challenging task. All match calendars across the world will have to accommodate such a tournament in 2022/23, which requires everyone's willingness to compromise.
However, the European clubs and leagues cannot be expected to bear the costs for such a rescheduling. We expect the clubs to be compensated for the damage that a final decision would cause."
Considering training camps and recovery time will be needed, it's likely the weeks either side of the 2022 tournament will be influenced by players needing to prioritise the international scene. For those competing in the Champions League and Europa League, things are likely to become extremely complicated.
UEFA president Michel Platini previously suggested he is supportive of the plans to host a winter meet, saying, "it's not possible to play in May when it's 40 degrees," per Dan Roan of BBC Sport.
"All parties have to compromise, not just the Europeans," said Sheikh Salman, per Conway.
The 2023 African Cup of Nations is currently set to be hosted in Guinea during the January following the World Cup's potential schedule. This means African international stars could be forced to play two tournaments back-to-back, and indeed, miss a large portion of the club season.
If such a scenario had to take place this year, Ivorian players including Yaya Toure, Wilfried Bony and Serge Aurier would have become forgotten men at their respective clubs.
Hassan Al Thawadi, head of the 2022's tournament's organising committee, confirmed Qatar is "ready to host it at any point in time," as reported by Conway. Although a winter date is yet to be officially confirmed, FIFA's Task Force has certainly made it clear European clubs hold little power over the decision.
As reported by Conway, FIFA's executive committee will confirm an official decision on the tournament's timing in March.

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