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Saturday, 4 December 2010

Show us the money, Mr Blatter

If you ever needed proof that FIFA is corrupt, you only need to llok as far as their decision to award the 2022 World Cup to that great footballing nation Qatar. Now I have nothing against the Qataris, but the simple fact is that they only have a single 50,000 seater stadium at present:

Doha Khalifa Int'l Stadium 50 000 2005
Al-Gharafa Al-Gharafa Stadium 25 000 2003
Umm-Affai Ahmed Bin Ali Stadium 25 000 2003
Doha Al-Ahli Stadium 20 000 -
Al-Wakrah Al-Wakrah Stadium 20 000
Al-Khawr Al-Khawr Stadium 20 000
Qatar SC Suhaim Bin Hamad Stadium 19 000
Al-Arabi Grand Hamad Stadium 18 000
Al-Sadd Jassim Bin Hamad Stadium 17 000 2004

Ok, so they can build some meore and take capacity up to say 50,000 each for 12 stadiums, two more 75,00 seater stadiums and a 100,000 seater stadium for the final, which would be 700,000 seating capacity. For a country with a population of 840,000. So it ain't gonna happen, because which country needs stadia with a seating capcity equal to 85% of its population.

Likewise hotel capacity. Perhaps they FIFA and the Qatari planners have figured that most supporters will be happy to kip in the desert, but are there 100,000 hotel beds in and around the international holiday destination that is Doha? Obviously not. Past World Cups have received over 400,000 vistors, but with worldwide economic growth expect that to grow every time. With national teams and FIFA officials taking out more than 32 of the biggest hotel resorts/ training camps, where are the fans going to go?

The clear lesson is that all of the expensive fact finding missions and assessments was just an exercise in international bullshit. Money talks, preferably in used notes.

But for the real bullshit let us look at the Russian bid. Why did Putin stay at home? Because he knew the result. He had paid for it after all. How did he know his bribes would be effective? Because while it is easy to lie to a prince or a Prime Minister about voting intentions, nobody takes Russian money and double crosses Putin.

So what does the typical fan have to look forward to in 2018. Well since the collapse of the Soviet Empire the residual state of Russia has become a fully paid up member of the international crime brotherhood, where nothing is though of dropping radiactive materials in the tea of those people that the state chooses not to like.

But the really bad news for fans who will have to travel round Russia on the internal air network are headlines like 'Two dead' as engine failure airliner lands in Moscow

At least two people have been killed and many others injured when a passenger plane rolled off the runway after making an emergency landing at a Moscow airport, Russian officials say.

According to media reports, all three of the plane's engines had failed by the time it landed at Domodedovo.


Yup, the TU-154, one of those Soviet planes that look like something out of Thunderbirds (actually there are quite a few) is still the plane of preference for Russian airlines, mostly because they are cheap, elf & safety is non-existent, and dead passengers can't complain.

By the end of 2018, most footy fans would have preferred that the World Cup had been held in Germany again.

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