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Russia was selected as host of the 2018 World Cup and Qatar for the 2022 version in a controversial decision today in Zürich. FIFA appear to have chosen new countries as hosts rather than return to previous hosts in a move similar to awarding South Africa the 2010 World Cup. Sepp Blatter can now say that he has overseen a World Cup in Asia (Korea/Japan – 2002), Europe (Germany – 2006), Africa (South Africa – 2010), South America (Brazil – 2014) and selected hosts in Asia/Europe (Russia – 2018) and the Middle East (Qatar – 2022). While supporters of the English and American bids for 2018 and 2022 respectively are understandably disappointed, Blatter’s desire to complete his around-the-world cannot be overlooked.

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