SKorea leader proposes Asian nations co-host 2030 World Cup

Kristopher Drake
June 12, 2017

Infantino was quoted as saying he'll sound out Chinese President Xi Jinping about Moon's idea when the two meet later this week.

The Zurich-based organization agreed with the UAE federation's demand, even though FIFA's statues demand a firm stance against any "political interference" in football and countries are often suspended from the global game as a result.

A referee from Singapore, assisted by another Singaporean and two officials from Malaysia, will replace the Qatari official.

"We are facing a diplomatic crisis", Infantino told Switzerland's Le Matin Dimanche newspaper.

It is not unusual for Federation Internationale de Football Association to place countries in separate qualifying draws because of disputes, and Infantino said he is in touch with the "highest authorities" in Qatar.

Chinese Football Association Vice President Zhang Jian, a member of the FIFA Council which devises the institution's global strategy, said a year ago he would back a Chinese World Cup in 2030.

Qatar denies it backs extremist groups and says the allegations from its Gulf rivals are politically motivated and meant to tarnish the country's image. "But I am convinced and optimistic that the situation in the region will improve again", he said.

The World Cup in Qatar has been stained with controversy especially the decision to host the showpiece at the oil rich nation. "In five years. Obviously, if football can make a small contribution, in any way, to an improvement, I will not hesitate to offer my help".

But the blockade of Qatar has worsened throughout the week.

Moreover, restrictions have been placed on Qatari shipping vessels moving through the Persian Gulf, and any Saudi, UAE or Bahraini national posting support for Qatar message on social media face lengthy terms and huge fines.

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