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Five things Russia and Qatar did right to win World Cup bids

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FIFA President Joseph Blatter gestures before announcing Russia as the host country for the 2018 soccer World Cup in Zurich, Switzerland, Thursday, Dec. 2.

Anja Niedringhaus/AP

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Feel-good stories aside, FIFA, like everyone else, needs money. The biggest and most efficient way for them to do so is through television broadcasts of the matches.

Qatar, right between Europe and Asia, also appealed to FIFA’s need for television ratings, making the case that its time zone puts it in striking range of about 3 billion viewers.

The cities hosting Russia’s World Cup are primarily in the Western part of the country, making them longitudinally similar to Qatar, and allowing the rest of Europe to watch matches at a reasonable hour, as well as Asia, the Middle East, and Africa.

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