THE HALF DECENT FOOTBALL MAGAZINE

{mosimage} 25 March ~ Reports suggest that Qatar are planning to create artificial clouds during the 2022 World Cup in order to make it cooler. Fears that players will suffer health problems from having to play in the high temperatures of a middle eastern summer have been raised since the country was announced as the host of the event.

The practice of "cloud seeding", as it is sometimes known, has existed for over 60 years and its use is common in arid Asian countries, such as Qatar, to alleviate drought by encouraging rainfall. It was even used by China just before the 2008 Beijing Olympics to clear air pollution in the city by causing rainfall to break up the smog.

Meanwhile, Mohammed Bin Hammam, the Qatari president of the Asian Football Federation, is trying to perk up the FIFA elections by challenging Sepp Blatter for the post of president. Blatter claims that if re-elected he will stand down in 2015 (although he also said that on the previous two occasions that he stood for re-election). During Blatter's 13-year reign at the top of FIFA football's governing body has been embroiled in scandal, faced constant claims of bribery and been heavily criticised for the way it does business.

Bin Hammam has stated that he would set up a "transparency committee" to make sure that the organisation is open. But many feel that this is all just talk from someone who is so embedded within FIFA. So, step forward Grant Wahl, an American journalist who works for Sports Illustrated. Wahl announced his intention to stand for the post shortly after Bin Hammam saying that he would be the "people's candidate". Wahl knows that there is extreme dissatisfaction among fans with the way FIFA is run, claiming that under him there would be a "Wikileaks type clean out of documents to show what's gone on". All of this has given Wahl considerable the public backing with very well-supported campaigns on Facebook and Twitter.

Despite his popularity with supporters it's fair to say that the chances of Wahl being elected are non-existent and he's unlikely to even be on the ballot. With the deadline of April 1 approaching, he still doesn't have the nomination he requires from a member federation. But at least his candidature has highlighted the changes desperately needed by a non-profit organisation that generates huge amounts of money. Philip Lewis

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