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UEFA nations to back 2022 World Cup winter switch

AP - Sports

DUBROVNIK, Croatia (AP) -- Europe's 54 soccer nations are prepared to support moving the 2022 Qatar World Cup from the summer heat to playing in January.

European soccer leaders tell The Associated Press they gave UEFA President Michel Platini a mandate Wednesday for change. FIFA President Sepp Blatter has suggested his ruling board should agree in principle next month.

Estonia Football Association President Aivar Pohlak says the switch should be a ''one-off'' for Qatar, where summer temperatures can reach 120 degrees.

Platini will announce UEFA's position after meetings with his strategy council and executive committee end on Friday.

Belgium's soccer president Francois de Keersmaecker says ''it seems the 2022 World Cup can't be played in the months of June and July.''

Scotland FA chief executive Stewart Regan says UEFA members favored ''the beginning of 2022.''

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