21 NOVEMBER, 2022 - SHANK MEDIA, BY MATT HOOPER: QATAR 2022 HAS BEEN THE MOST CONTROVERSIAL AND DIVISIVE EVENT EVER STAGED IN FOOTBALL HISTORY, AND IT HAS CLEARLY SHOWN FOOTBALL, FIFA AND THE WORLD CUP NEEDS TO CHANGE. FROM THE CORRUPT AND HIGHLY CONTROVERSIAL DECISION TO AWARD QATAR THE RIGHT TO HOST IT, TO THE HUMAN RIGHTS RECORD OF QATAR AND THEIR DRACONIAN RULES INCLUDING MAKING LGBTQ+ PEOPLE ILLEGAL AND RESTRICTING THE FREEDOMS OF NOT ONLY THEIR RESIDENTS, BUT ALL VISITORS TO THE WORLD CUP. EVEN SPONSORS HAVE HAD TO MAKE CONCESSIONS AROUND THE SALES OF BEER, AND THE ENTIRE EUROPEAN CLUB SEASON HAS BEEN RADICALLY ALTERED BY THIS WINTER WORLD CUP.
HOSTS QATAR GOT THEIR OWN WORLD CUP UNDERWAY ON SUNDAY, WITH A DYSMAL 1-2 DEFEAT TO ECUADOR, BECOMING THE FIRST HOST NATION EVER TO LOSE THEIR OPENING GAME IN A WORLD CUP. THE DAY BEFORE THE 22ND FIFA WORLD CUP GOT UNDERWAY IN THE MIDDLE EAST, THE 16TH RUGBY LEAGUE WORLD CUP CAME TO ITS CONCLUSION, AND IT WAS A RUGBY LEAGUE WORLD CUP WHICH WILL BE FOREVER REMEMBERED AS IT BROUGHT THE ENTIRE SPORT TOGETHER FOR THE FIRST TIME.
BETWEEN 15 OCTOBER AND 19 NOVEMBER ENGLAND HOSTED THE MEN'S, WOMEN'S, WHEELCHAIR AND PHYSICAL DISABILITY WORLD CUPS, ALL PLAYED UNDER ONE BANNER ACROSS 23 VENUES UP AND DOWN THE COUNTRY. ALL THE GAMES FROM THE TOURNAMENTS WERE BROADCAST ON BBC AND THE MEN'S AND WOMEN'S FINALS TOOK PLACE ON THE SAME DAY IN THE SAME STADIUM. AMONG THE HIGHLIGHTS OF THE ENTIRE EVENT WAS THE SIGHT OF THE MEN'S, WOMEN'S AND WHEELCHAIR WINNERS WITH THEIR TROPHIES TOGETHER ON THE PITCH AT OLD TRAFFORD. THIS RUGBY LEAGUE WORLD CUP NOT ONLY ELEVATED THE SPORT, IT SHOWED THE WAY FOR INCLUSIVITY AND HOW TO MAKE THE WORLD CUP A CELEBRATION OF THE SPORT.
FOLLOWING GIANNI INFANTINO'S DISGRACEFUL COMMENTS DURING A PRE-TOURNAMENT SPEECH LAST SATURDAY, FOOTBALL NEEDS TO REACH OUT TO ALL AND REASSERT ITSELF AS A SPORT FOR ALL, SO HERE IS A PLAN TO DO IT.
THE WORLD CUPS FOR MEN'S AND WOMEN'S FOOTBALL HAVE BEEN AWARDED TO THE FOLLOWING COUNTRIES IN THE UPCOMING YEARS:
2023 FIFA WOMEN'S WORLD CUP - AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND
2026 FIFA WORLD CUP - USA, CANADA AND MEXICO
2027 FIFA WOMEN'S WORLD CUP - BIDS BEING ACCEPTED
2030 FIFA WORLD CUP - BIDS FROM MOROCCO / URUGUAY, ARGENTINA, CHILE AND PARAGUAY / SPAIN, PORTUGAL AND UKRAINE / EGYPT, GREECE AND SAUDI ARABIA
FOLLOWING THE 100TH ANNIVERSARY FIFA WORLD CUP IN 2030 FIFA SHOULD MERGE THE MEN'S, WOMEN'S, BEACH SOCCER, FUTSAL, HOMELESS AND BLIND WORLD CUPS INTO ONE EVENT, CREATING A TRULY INCLUSIVE FESTIVAL OF FOOTBALL.
IN ADDITION TO THIS SIGNIFICANT CHANGE, FIFA MUST ALSO CREATE A NEW FRAMEWORK TO SELECT HOST NATIONS, PUTTING DEMOCRACY, HUMAN RIGHTS, FOOTBALL INFRASTRUCTURE, LEGACY AND HERITAGE AT THE HEART OF ANY SUCCESSFUL BID. I AGREE WITH GARY NEVILLE THAT EVERY REGION OF THE WORLD SHOULD HOST THE WORLD CUP, BUT THEY MUST ONLY DO SO IF THEY DESERVE TO. IF THEY CANNOT UPHOLD DEMOCRACY, HUMAN RIGHTS AND PROVE THERE WILL BE A LASTING LEGACY FOR FOOTBALL IN THEIR COUNTRY, THEN SHOULD NEVER GET NEAR HOSTING IT. TO THOSE WHO SAY SPORT AND POLITICS SHOULD NOT MIX, I SAY YOU ARE TALKING NONSENSE, AND I REFER YOU TO THE ICONIC MOMENT IN 1995 WHEN NELSON MANDELA PRESENTED THE RUGBY WORLD CUP TO FRANCOIS PIENAAR. SPORT IS AN INTEGRAL PART OF SOCIETY, AND NO SPORT IS MORE PART OF SOCIETY THAN FOOTBALL. SO FOOTBALL HAS A RESPONSIBILITY TO UPHOLD UNIVERSAL HUMAN RIGHTS, DEMOCRACY AND INCLUSIVITY. 
THE FIFA WORLD CUP WOULD BE THE PERFECT STAGE TO BRING THE WHOLE OF FOOTBALL TOGETHER, GIVING WOMEN, THE HOMELESS AND THE BLIND THE SAME STAGE WHICH HAS LARGELY BEEN THE PRESERVE OF THE WORLD'S BEST MEN'S FOOTBALLERS. 
SO HOW WOULD IT WORK?
EACH CONFEDERATION WOULD TAKE IT IN TURNS TO STAGE THE FIFA WORLD CUP FROM 2034 ONWARDS.
INSTEAD OF SIX CONFEDERATIONS, THERE WOULD BE FOUR:
THE OFC AND AFC WOULD BE MERGED WITH OCEANIA AND ASIA COMPETING IN ONE CONFEDERATION FOR QUALIFICATION AND REGIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS AT CLUB AND INTERNATIONAL LEVEL
CONCACAF AND CONEMBOL WOULD BE MERGED, WITH NORTH AMERICA, THE CARIBBEAN AND SOUTH AMERICA COMPETING IN ONE CONFEDERATION FOR QUALIFICATION AND REGIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS AT CLUB AND INTERNATIONAL LEVEL
UEFA (EUROPE) WOULD BE THE FIRST CONFEDERATION TO HOST THE NEW FIFA WORLD CUP, FOLLOWED BY CONEMBOL (AMERICAS), CAF (AFRICA) AND APFC (ASIA-PACIFIC)
AS AN EXAMPLE, ENGLAND COULD HOST THE 2034 FIFA WORLD CUP

POTENTIAL VENUES:
MEN'S - (LONDON) WEMBLEY, TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR STADIUM, EMIRATES STADIUM, STAMFORD BRIDGE, LONDON STADIUM (LIVERPOOL) ANFIELD, EVERTON STADIUM (MANCHESTER) ETIHAD STADIUM, OLD TRAFFORD (NEWCASTLE) ST JAMES'S PARK (SUNDERLAND) STADIUM OF LIGHT (LEEDS) ELLAND ROAD (SHEFFIELD) HILLSBOROUGH (DERBY) PRIDE PARK (LEICESTER) KING POWER STADIUM (BRISTOL) ASHTON GATE (PLYMOUTH) HOME PARK (BIRMINGHAM) VILLA PARK (WOLVERHAMPTON) MOLINEUX (SOUTHAMPTON) ST MARY'S (BRIGHTON) AMEX STADIUM
WOMEN'S - (LONDON) WEMBLEY, TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR STADIUM, EMIRATES STADIUM (LIVERPOOL) ANFIELD, EVERTON STADIUM (MANCHESTER) OLD TRAFFORD, ETIHAD STADIUM (BIRMINGHAM) VILLA PARK (WOLVERHAMPTON) MOLINEUX (LEEDS) ELLAND ROAD (SHEFFIELD) HILLSBOROUGH (NEWCASTLE) ST JAMES'S PARK (SUNDERLAND) STADIUM OF LIGHT 
BEACH SOCCER - (NEWQUAY) FISTRAL BEACH
HOMELESS - (PRESTON) UNIVERSITY OF CENTRAL LANCASHIRE
BLIND - (LIVERPOOL) STANLEY PARK
FUTSAL - (NOTTINGHAM) MOTORPOINT ARENA

498 MATCHES WOULD BE PLAYED AT VENUES IN 18 TOWNS AND CITIES ACROSS EVERY REGION OF ENGLAND, USING STADIUMS WHICH ARE HOME TO 12 CURRENT PREMIER LEAGUE CLUBS. THIS WOULD TRULY BE A WORLD CUP FOR ALL, PLAYED BY ALL AND ACCESSIBLE TO ALL. THE NEW FIFA WORLD CUP WOULD RESTORE DECENCY TO THE GREATEST EVENT IN THE SPORT, AND WOULD HELP OUR SPORT TO MOVE ON FROM THIS DEBACLE IN THE DESERT.

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