Just over two weeks away from the start of the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, you would hardly believe that the biggest tournament in football was just around the corner.
Every four years, the main international event in the sport dominates the news cycle. There is speculation over squad selections, players to watch, and potential winners. It is normally an exciting time for supporters.
That hasn't been the case this year. The mid-season nature of the tournament have resulted in many struggling to get up for the upcoming fixtures. Concentration is very much on club football at the moment, with only a week between the last round of domestic games and the first match in Doha.
Of course, the venue of this edition has also played a part. Not only is Qatar a country that isn't really stepped in history in the sport, but the many human rights issues within the nation also mean that it will not exactly be the most hospitable place for many of those visiting.
As well as that, a recent video on YouTube showed how many of the stadiums set to be used seemed to still be well short of completion despite how close the event was.
This is a situation all of FIFA's own doing. Not only was the decision to hold the tournament in Qatar a farcical one for human rights reasons, their inability to hold it during the regular summer slot has also taken away from what should be a momentous occasion.
When it comes to players, they have also suffered. The condensed nature of the club season up to this point, something done to accommodate for the month-long break needed for the World Cup, has resulted in less rest periods and more injuries. Even those who pick up small ailments between now and the tournament could find their place on the plane in jeopardy due to the lack of recovery time available before the event gets underway.
In all, the whole thing is a farce.
Jamie Carragher calls out 'disgrace' of Qatar World Cup
While there have been some discussions around Qatar's human rights violations and other issues with the tournament in sections of the media, pundits largely been absent from that discourse.
That's why it was so refreshing to hear Jamie Carragher touch on the issues last night.
Speaking on CBS, the former Liverpool and England defender labelled the fact that the World Cup was being in Qatar as a 'disgrace'.
"It's an absolute disgrace... A 10-day or a two-week injury is going to keep players out of a World Cup, which should not be happening."@Carra23 isn't a fan of the timing of the World Cup and doesn't hold back. 🗣 pic.twitter.com/idnSS3O7g3
— CBS Sports Golazo ⚽️ (@CBSSportsGolazo) November 2, 2022
I think it's an absolute disgrace that the World Cup is in the position that it's in, for lots of reasons.
It was corrupt that Qatar was given the World Cup, we knew that at the time. They campaigned to have it in the summer, it was impossible to have a World Cup in the summer with the temperatures.
It gets moved to the middle of the season. Players all around the world could get injured in the next couple of weeks. [Raphael] Varane was crying coming off the pitch at Stamford Bridge, that's how close we are to the World Cup.
A ten day or two week injury is going to keep players out of the World Cup, which should not be happening. It all started with FIFA giving them that World Cup in the first place and then moving it. The stuff that goes on in their country is a completely different issue as well.
I think it's absolutely disgusting.
It's difficult to argue with any of the points made above.
The 2022 FIFA World Cup is one built on corruption, held in a country that gives little regards to some of those within their borders based upon their nationality or sexual orientation.
As for the football side of things, both domestic schedules and World Cup dreams of some players will be destroyed due to the decision to hold it during the winter.
Some of this will likely be lost once the football gets underway, but we need more pundits to use their sizeable platforms to call it out. Hopefully Jamie Carragher has started a trend.