Qatar May Not Be Able To Host The 2022 World Cup, According To Reports

As we all know, back in 2010 the FIFA Executive Committee chose Qatar to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup, beating out the likes of the United States, Australia, Japan and South Korea. Many were furious about the decision, and believed it must have been the result of deep-seated corruption within FIFA.

The former FIFA President, Sepp Blatter made a big deal of showering Qatar and Russia (who were chosen to host the 2018 World Cup) with praise in spite of the backlash, and essentially ignored his critics.

He said back in 2010:

“I have to say thanks to to the Executive Committee of FIFA because for 2018 and 2022 we go to new lands, because the FIFA World Cup has never been in eastern Europe or the Middle East. So, I’m a happy president when we speak of the development of football.

Although the soccer mogul, who began his presidency back in 1998, claims to have been happy about the decision, it’s safe to say he wasn’t too happy about it by the time 2015 came around.

In 2015, Blatter was made to step down as president of FIFA,  in 2016 FIFA launched an investigation over allegations that he violated the organization’s rules on bribery and corruption.

Since the decision was made in 2010, a lot of preparation has gone into the construction of soccer stadiums in Qatar. However, now it appears likely that Qatar will be unable to host the World Cup when 2022 finally arrives.

According to a recent report, “Western diplomats have privately stated they do not know whether or not the tournament will take place as planned”.

This is in part because of the many allegations of corruption that were made during the bidding process.

But it gets much worse for the Middle Eastern nation. Qatar is currently quarrelling with other Arab League countries because of the risk of non-payment for their $120 billion infrastructure programme. This could mean that they will not be receiving the necessary contracts to continue the infrastructure project.

The programme is thought to be a “high-risk project” especially considering many thousands of people are being employed to build the stadiums and are protected by insufficient health and safety guidelines.

In fact, according to a report by Amnesty International, workers employed by FIFA endure terrible living conditions and have even been deceived about their salaries.

Although FIFA denies these claims, the fact remains that a number of workers, who are predominantly migrants from neighboring counties, have died in the process of building Qatar’s stadiums. In fact, it has been estimated that there have been over a thousand deaths since preparation began in 2010.

Aidan McQuade, the director of Anti-Slavery International, said:

“Wherever you look, you are clearly seeing a systematic use of forced labor in dire conditions, which is going to take its toll. When you have poor living and working conditions, dangerous work and lack of water supply, you get a sense of just how dreadful things are going to be.”

However, Qatar’s Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy has spoken out about the claims that the country will have to forfeit hosting the 2022 World Cup, and stated that they are totally untrue.

“The intention to create doubt regarding the tournament, while attempting to cause resentment amongst Qatari citizens and anxiety amongst foreign businesses and residents, is as transparent as it is laughable. Despite the ambitious title of this report, there is absolutely no risk to the future of the first World Cup in the Middle East.”

As of now, there is no way we can know for sure whether or not Qatar’s infrastructure project will go ahead and ultimately whether the Arab nation will be hosting the soccer tournament by the time 2022 arrives.

For now, we have the 2018 World Cup in Russia to look forward to (we hope), so watch this space for more developments to the story.

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