Ex-FIFA Head Says ‘Mistake’ for Qatar To Host World Cup
Former FIFA president Sepp Blatter told a newspaper that awarding the hosting rights to the 2022 World Cup to Qatar was “a mistake.” Blatter was chairman of the international soccer federation in 2010 when the decision to grant the international tournament to Qatar was made. “It is too small of a country. Football and the World Cup are too big for it,” Blatter said.
Allegations of corruption and human rights violations have dogged Qatar since it was selected as host. The World Cup will run from November 20 until December 18.
Blatter’s comments to the Swiss newspaper Tages Anzeiger were published on the same day that a Qatar World Cup ambassador warned that LGBTQ visitors to the tournament in Qatar “must accept our rules.” Khalid Salman, a formal Qatari soccer player, told the German television broadcaster ZDF that homosexuality “is damage in the mind.”
“The most important thing is, everybody will accept that they come here. But they will have to accept our rules,” he said, adding he was concerned children may learn “something that is not good.”
The interview was then immediately stopped by an official from the World Cup organizing committee that accompanied Salman.