Uefa members back winter World Cup

The proposal to host the competition during the winter has taken a giant step towards materialising after Europe's governing body was unanimous in agreement for the motion
The prospect of staging a winter World Cup in Qatar in 2022 has gathered momentum after Uefa's 54 member associations gave their backing to the proposal.

The continent's football leaders met in Croatia and concluded that the competition could not be staged during the summer in the Middle Eastern country, where temperatures can reach as high as 50C.

Britain's Fifa vice-president Jim Boyce told BBC: "What has come out of this meeting is that the World Cup cannot be played in Qatar in the summer.

"Everybody was certainly in agreement about that."

Despite unanimously agreeing that it is necessary to move the tournament to winter in an effort to combat the heat, some parties have clashed over deciding which month would have the least effect on the domestic football calendar.

The British associations have proposed a November competition in a bid to ensure their respective festive fixtures go ahead, while Uefa are keen on January as the Champions League shuts down from mid-December to February and would open a four-week window for the World Cup to take place.

Boyce, though, added that there is plenty of time for opposing parties to find a compromise.

"There is still nine years to go," he said. "People feel Fifa should sit down with all the major stakeholders and come up with a solution that would cause the minimum disruption to football."

Fifa will ultimately have the final say on the proposal to host the World Cup during the winter, with the governing body's executive committee strongly expected to sanction the motion in principle when they meet on October 3.