Russia’s Bid for 2018 FIFA World Cup Under Fire for Corruption
by Jack Weiler on Friday, November 20th, 2015
Drawing in countless fans every year, soccer is definitely the most popular sport and pastime in the world. The ultimate competition in soccer, the World Cup, occurs once every four years. The World Cup summons the best national teams from hundreds of countries who navigate a series of qualifiers and playoff rounds to obtain the ultimate goal: World Cup champion. Almost as celebrated as winning the World Cup is hosting the World Cup. Recent hosts include Brazil, South Africa, and Germany. Hosting the world cup brings pride, tourism, and revenue to the country lucky enough to have the honor. Russia is set to host the next World Cup in 2018.
The next World Cup is slated to take place in Moscow during the summer of 2018. Russia has never hosted a World Cup before, so this is a momentous occasion for Russia. Russia’s hosting could do a number of positive things for the country: they could strengthen their international relations and improve popular opinions of the government. The tournament would also bring more tourism to Russia as people would be able see beyond what is shown on the news to the tremendous beauty of the country itself.
However, serious corruption allegations are held against Russia’s obtaining the bid for 2018. People are accusing Russia of buying votes in order to host the World Cup. This controversy comes at an unfortunate time for FIFA, possibly the most corrupt organization in history. Recently, many high level employees of FIFA have had to step down due to allegations of corruption, including FIFA’s president, Sepp Blatter. If concrete evidence of Russian corruption shows up, Russia could lose the World Cup for 2018.
The FIFA corruption poses a serious question: are sports organizations becoming too political? Sports originally were fun pastimes and hobbies; they helped us stay in shape and push ourselves. Ever since professional sports were created, their leagues and fanbases have continued to grow in size. Now some leagues have almost 50 teams which tend to be owned by billionaires with immense amounts of power. In the NBA, for example, the LA Clippers sold for around a billion dollars 2 years ago. The NFL, too, is accused of corruption when dealing with scandals such as deflategate and the myriad instances domestic violence committed by players. Some say Roger Goodell, the NFL commissioner, suspended Tom Brady solely for the publicity. Sports leagues should not be in such positions of power that they attract bribes so frequently. Even college sports teams are in high positions of power. The bottom line is that we should be able to enjoy sports as an escape from the troubles of the world, not a pathway into more problems.
Short URL: http://miltonmeasure.org/?p=7498