2022 in review – May

Featured image credit: Guilhem Vellut/CC BY 2.0/Edited for size

Featured image credit: Guilhem Vellut/CC BY 2.0/Edited for size

The UEFA Champions League at the Stade de France in Paris was marred by events outside of the stadium prior to the match, with UEFA commissioning an independent report after videos circulated of police using pepper spray and tear gas as supporters tried to scan their tickets.

Liverpool called for a formal investigation to be carried out over what is described as the “unacceptable” treatment of its supporters. The club said it was “hugely disappointed” at the stadium entry issues and the breakdown of the security perimeter that Liverpool fans faced.

The challenges created by China’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic forced the country to postpone the Asian Games, while hosting rights for football’s Asian Cup were given up completely.

The Olympic Council of Asia postponed Hangzhou’s Asian Games, which had been scheduled for September 10-25, citing the “pandemic situation” and the size of the multi-sport event. The Games were later rescheduled for September 23 to October 8, 2023.

Meanwhile, the Asian Football Confederation announced that it had been notified by the Chinese Football Association that it could no longer host the Asian Cup as scheduled next July. China had been awarded hosting rights in 2019 but the event will now be held in Qatar.

Elsewhere, Spanish LaLiga club Real Madrid sealed a €360m (£316m/$382m) deal with global investment firm Sixth Street and premium experiences company Legends which will lead to the formation of a new entity aimed at enhancing the non-football activities at the revamped Estadio Santiago Bernabéu.

Real said the funds it receives can be invested across any of its activities, with Sixth Street acquiring the right to participate in the operation of certain new businesses of the Bernabéu for a 20-year period.

May was a month of firsts in the US as the inaugural Miami Grand Prix took place at Hard Rock Stadium and Nashville SC’s Geodis Park became the latest Major League Soccer venue to open its doors.

The US was also awarded hosting rights for the 2031 men’s Rugby World Cup, which will mark the first time the event has been held in the country. Australia landed hosting rights to the 2027 tournament.