Qatar promises perfect conditions for players
Leaders of the Qatari bid to host the 2022 World Cup offered reassurance on Wednesday that scorching summer temperatures would not be a problem thanks to air-conditioned stadiums.
The lack of travelling would also help, representatives said on the eve of Thursday's vote, when Qatar's compact bid will be up against Australia, South Korea, the United States and Japan.
"To produce their best, players need the best conditions," said former Mexico, United States, China, Nigeria and Costa Rica coach Bora Milutinovic. "There's nothing better than to play, train and relax in the same place."
"The long distances reduce the standard of matches by tiredness. In Qatar it is not necessary to travel. Conditions are ideal for the players to produce their best effort."
Hassan Al-Thawadi, CEO of the Qatar bid, said air conditioned stadiums would protect fans and players from the blistering heat and would also help football in other countries with high temperatures.
"All our stadiums, training sites and fan zones will be at 27 degrees Celsius, all solar-powered and 100 percent carbon neutral," he said. "The application for this technology goes far beyond stadiums.
"Heat will not be an issue whatever the climate and we want this to be a global lasting legacy," he said, adding that the stadiums could be dismantled and transported for use by poorer nations after the tournament.