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  1. #1
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    Dec 2009

    Default Russia to host 2018, Qatar to 2022 football WC

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    FIFA sent the World Cup into uncharted territory on Thursday, handing the 2018 edition to Russia and going to Qatar in 2022.

    Russia's selection came despite the no-show of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, but his influence still had an impact on FIFA's 22 voters as the bid won over England, Spain-Portugal and Belgium-Netherlands.

    Qatar brings the World Cup to the smallest host ever but one which has unparalleled financial clout to stage the world's biggest single-sport event. It overcame objections about holding the games in desert heat and asked FIFA to take a "bold gamble."

    Russia to host 2018, Qatar to 2022 football WC

    "We go to new lands," FIFA President Sepp Blatter said.

    Often derided as a conservative organization, the decisions were a big gamble for FIFA, which could have gone for assured sporting and commercial success by handing the event to England and the United States.

    Yet despite some criticism in FIFA study reports last month, it decided to go deep into Eastern Europe and right into the Persian Gulf.

    Following corruption allegations that led to two of the 24 FIFA executive committee members being excluded from the vote, the daring decisions that challenged conventional knowledge are bound to be controversial.

    After three days of high anxiety when England sent Prime Minister David Cameron, Prince William and David Beckham for intense lobbying and the United States counted on the aura of former President Bill Clinton, none were a match for the novelty promised by Qatar and Russia.

    "Thank you for believing in change," said Qatar's Emir, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani.

    Putin heads to thank FIFA for 2018 World Cup

    Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said on Thursday he was leaving for Zurich to thank soccer governing body FIFA for awarding Russia the right to host the 2018 soccer World Cup finals.

    "This decision shows that Russia is trusted," Putin told reporters before leaving for the airport to fly to Zurich.

    Putin, who had complained of unscrupulous competition in the contest, said the decision showed much about Russia's economic and political stability.

    "Hurrah! Victory!," Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said in a Twitter post on the FIFA decision.

    Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin said Russia will spend significantly less on preparations of the 2018 World Cup than on the organisation of the 2014 Winter Olympics.

    "It'll be significantly less," Kudrin said. "We have a clear plan on assigning sites."

    ...being a human...

  2. #2
    Runner Up - Admins Awards
    Join Date
    Dec 2009


    Russia and the tiny Gulf state of Qatar were awarded the 2018 and 2022 World Cups on Thursday after an acrimonious bidding war marred by allegations of corruption and illegal deal-making. (AFP Photo)

    The bombshell conclusion to two years of frenzied lobbying saw world football supremo Sepp Blatter reveal the winners following a secret ballot of 22 FIFA executive committee members in Zurich.

    The announcement means the World Cup will be staged in two countries which have never hosted the event before following the 2014 tournament in Brazil.

    Russia prevailed in the 2018 race, upsetting England and joint bids from Spain and Portugal and Belgium and the Netherlands.

    The outcome represented a stunning comeback for Russia, whose campaign had believed to be in trouble after Prime Minister Vladimir Putin declined to join the lobbying effort in Zurich.

    But the shock of the day came in the 2022 race, where Qatar beat off stiff competition from the United States, Australia and Asian rivals South Korea and Japan in a remarkable result.

    Qatar 2022 bid president Mohammed bin Hamad Al-Thani promised: "We won't let you down. You will be proud of us, proud of the Middle East."

    ...being a human...



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