Being a patriotic Englishman, I naturally had on the ruddiest of red faces, and was spluttering aloud, when the successful World Cup bids were announced. Even as a semi-patriotic US based prole, I proudly called “fix!” upon learning the tiny nation of Qatar was to host the 2022 National Hand-wringing Spectacular. But, recent news has flipped a switch (of an admittedly low wattage bulb) and I am now eagerly anticipating the tournament. This is because an engineer in Qatar claims to have invented artificial, remote-controlled clouds, to ease the searing heat during matches. That’s remote-controlled clouds.
Now consider that FIFA only recently relented and is set to test goal-line technology next year, in part thanks to Frank Lampard’s incredible ‘ghost goal’ during last year’s World Cup1. It is an understatement to describe FIFA as ‘technology-shy’, but what if Qatar can act as a catalyst to introduce amazing new technology into football? What could that look like?