No pleasantries. Let’s get right to it.
Ok, Qatar?!? Really?!? How in the world does Qatar beat out the USA as the appointed host nation for the 2002 World Cup? I don’t even know where Qatar is. Hold on, let me Google it……………………………………………….Ok, found it! Ok, maybe I’m wrong. It appears to only be a stone’s throw away from hot vacation spots such as Afghanistan and Pakistan. I hear those are great tourist destinations in the summer time.
I mean, c’mon! Is soccer even a sport in Qatar? There’s no way that 64 games are going to be played in a country of that size. Am I missing that some of these games will have to be played in surrounding nations? Is that the case? Iran perhaps? I hear they love Americans!
It’s perplexing to me that FIFA would opt to not go with the United States in this instance. Forget the fact that we already had a Cup in ’92. Let’s start with the infrastructure. We have some of the most state-of-the-art stadiums in the world. The average temperature of our host cities combined is still in the double digits. And lets talk accommodations – travel, housing and food. I think the TSA will get things figured out by then. I also think a country the size of Connecticut might have problems hosting 31 nations and their respective fans over the span of 30 days. And now let’s just be honest. Do we really know what the one war-stricken corner of the world is going to be like in the next 12 years?
I mean, does Qatar even have a national team. Ok, ok. They do. I just Googled it again actually, so I’m trusting Wikipedia on this one. But they have never even qualified for a World Cup. And I’m willing to bet that they won’t be qualifying for 2014 or 2018 either. Maybe prior qualification should be requisite to the bidding process. It’s like “Hey, we don’t really care about this sport. Our excuse for a national team isn’t even good. We’re obviously not suited to host one of the most important and prominent sporting events the world has ever seen. Really, all we care about is the commerce that this event will bring in to our country. We’re not so concerned about growing the sport of rugby………..soccer. We mean soccer! Bring the World’s Cup to Qatar. I mean the World Cup!”
Now I’m not letting Sepp Blatter off the hook either. For all you less-educated soccer fans, this guy makes Bud Selig look like THE greatest sports commissioner to ever live and MLB look like its currently THE most well run sporting organization in the history of our country. Instant replay? You would think Bud Selig invented it! FIFA’s pooling system makes the BCS look like a gift from heaven. The World Cup earlier this year saw more ultra-controversial calls go completely unreviewed, altering not only the outcomes of games, but the advancements of teams to the next round. Even in the midst of this controversy, Mr. Blatter insisted that instant replay would play no part of future tournaments. Let’s just say that public relations or tact isn’t really in his arsenal. Neither is the idea of progression. Or humanity!
The only way this incendiary fire will be quenched within me is if the United States meets Qatar in any of the knock out stages of the tournament. On their field. In their backyard. In their kitchen. And Sam’s Army dominates, demoralizes and embarrasses their national team….before halftime.