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Allegations of Qatari payments may lead to revote on 2022 World Cup

Jun 1, 2014, 11:22 AM EST

FBL-WC2022-FIFA-QATAR-LABOUR-SLAVERY-UNIONS Getty Images

FIFA just may end up voting again on the host location of the 2022 World Cup.

A report published in England’s Sunday Times alleges FIFA officials accepted payments of around $5m in exchange for supporting Qatar’s bid to host the 2022 World Cup. The allegations are based on millions of secret documents that are said to outline how former Qatari football official Mohamed Bin Hammam bought other officials’ votes.

FIFA’s chief investigator, Michael Garcia, has already been investigating the possibility of impropriety with regards to the 2022 elections. He is set to meet with officials from the Qatar 2022 organizing committee on Monday.

Suspicions of wrongdoing have already plagued this World Cup. That’s not to mention Qatar’s labor laws, its stance on homosexuality, and the fact that the Cup will almost certainly need to be moved to winter due to the desert state’s extreme summer temperatures. But is this document trail the final push FIFA need to call for a revote on who will host the 2022 World Cup?

FIFA vice-president Jim Boyce said that, if the allegations were proved, he would support voting again:

As a member currently of the Fifa executive committee, we feel that any evidence whatsoever that people involved were bribed to do a certain vote, all that evidence should go to Michael Garcia, whom Fifa have given full authority to. If Garcia’s report comes up and his recommendations are that wrongdoing happened for that vote for the 2022 World Cup, I certainly as a member of the executive committee would have absolutely no problem whatsoever if the recommendation was for a revote.

The path to a revote won’t be a simple one – this story is certain to include many more twists and turns. But maybe, just maybe, it will be the final push that removes Qatar as a World Cup host nation.

  1. chunkala - Jun 1, 2014 at 11:55 AM

    Revote creates a simple means for the end – removing WC from Qatar.
    Wouldn’t the US get the WC since it was 2nd in voting? Assuming US still wants it of course.

  2. dkalev - Jun 1, 2014 at 12:15 PM

    It’s obvious to anyone with multiple brain cells that this World Cup was bought… Why on earth would you put a World Cup in qatar… Besides their radical policies, let’s not forget their peoples penchants for violent behavior, and moving the World Cup to the winter?? Yeah ok FIFA… Go count your oil money while telling us no one was bribed…

    • reformed2012 - Jun 1, 2014 at 1:36 PM

      Be careful, your comment qualified as “Islamophobic” in the USA…

    • jdfsquared - Jun 1, 2014 at 4:40 PM

      While I believe the cup should be moved from Qatar, this comment is racist and reactionary. Citing “their peoples penchants for violent behavior” is like me citing westerners penchant for imperialism and the slaughter of innocent people in the name of oil interests. It’s an affront to Arabs and Arab-Americans (which I am not), and it’s not worthy of this board.

    • raysfan1 - Jun 1, 2014 at 5:08 PM

      Regarding “their peoples penchant for violent behavior,” you should be made aware that Qatar is an ally of the USA, has hosted US troops since the first gulf war and in fact hosts USCENTCOM’s forward deployed headquarters.

      Insulting friends is a good way to lose friends.

      • Matthew - Jun 1, 2014 at 9:28 PM

        With friends like Qatar, who needs enemies, raysfan?
        Fact of the matter is that FIFA – based on the above information – needs to move the World Cup from Qatar, period.

      • raysfan1 - Jun 1, 2014 at 9:55 PM

        First, please note I did not address whether I think the World Cup should be moved. That is a separate issue. For the record, if the allegations are proven true, the I agree they should lost the 2022World Cup.

        Now as to the “with friends like Qatar” bit… If the government was not friendly towards the US and not able to provide the necessary security, we would not be able to have a mission as important as the USCENTCOM forward headquarters based there. Qatar has actually been very consistently pro-US and NATO.

    • giantsninerswarriors - Jun 1, 2014 at 9:15 PM

      On the topic of “penchants for violent behavior,” Qatar had a homicide rate of 0.9 per 100,000 people in 2012, according to a study conducted by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.

      By comparison, the United States had a homicide rate of 4.8 per 100,000 people in the same year. So… it’s a bit absurd to toss stones at Qatar for the violent behavior of their people.

      • Comrade23 - Jun 2, 2014 at 11:17 AM

        I think that was more in reference to barbaric practices like stoning still being practiced there. My personal beef with Qatar is over their government’s human rights record. They have thousands of people from the Indian subcontinent and places like Nepal being held as indentured servants, in squalid living conditions, working LITERALLY TO DEATH to build the cities, stadiums and infrastructure necessary for the World Cup (no bribery required at all to get votes for a host country without the requisite TOWNS, right?). Thousands have died already and many more are projected to before 2022. But hey, they’re pro-USA, so it’s all good.

      • chunkala - Jun 2, 2014 at 4:55 PM

        Probably also reference to slave labor and the mass deaths of their immigrant workers. It would be a good start if you started actually learning more and lecturing less. But then again you’re probably just another uneducated San Fran liberal.

  3. kicksave1980 - Jun 1, 2014 at 3:35 PM

    @dkalev- Agreed 100%. It was painfully obvious to most everyone that the decision on Qatar was rigged from the jump. There aren’t enough lifetime bans to go around if (when?) this is “proven”.

  4. philliephaninva - Jun 1, 2014 at 4:24 PM

    Part of the process needs to be that the host country be “civilized”. This years World Cup will be a disaster. Qatar will be just as bad if it is allowed to go through but for different reasons. A proper climate and proper population is a must.

  5. sailbum7 - Jun 1, 2014 at 5:54 PM

    Bribery for votes is standard practice with virtually all of these big name competitions. If it is not money changing hands it is a quid pro quo that they vote for each other’s bids to host in different years. Whenever there is this much money and prestige in the mix there will always be some level of bribery going on.

  6. tyler1861 - Jun 1, 2014 at 8:32 PM

    Who cares that a nation’s stance on homosexuality is negative as criteria to host a World Cup!! No nation with any religious values of morality or decency would ever condone homosexuality.. Russia’s stance didn’t cater to the gay agenda and the Sochi Olympics were wonderful and so will World Cup 2018 when they host it..

    • jdfsquared - Jun 2, 2014 at 2:29 AM

      Nothing like a little post about the Arabs to bring out the bigots, eh?

      • chunkala - Jun 2, 2014 at 4:57 PM

        Ah, this country was formed out of Christian values not Islamic ones. Tolerance is and should be a distant 2nd.

  7. mazblast - Jun 1, 2014 at 8:37 PM

    Gee, what an out-of-the-blue accusation. Next you’ll be telling us that the WWE or NBA are rigged.

    Everyone knows how you get the World Cup. The question isn’t whether FIFA (like the IOC) is bribed, but how openly it’s done and whether it can be covered up. In this case, it may have been so brazen that even FIFA can’t ignore it or rationalize it. I think they’ll make a heck of an effort to ignore the evidence, but in the long run may have to give the cup to someone else–but probably not those evil Americans.

  8. lyleoross - Jun 2, 2014 at 4:23 AM

    These threads always make me laugh. We view Qatar as violent, and yet how many wars have they started in the last 60 years? The U.S. hasn’t had a period of more than six months that we’ve not been involved in an international conflict in that period. That doesn’t even consider the number of gun deaths we have right here in the good ole U.S.A. And when our current President called for non-violent means to solve international conflicts he got ridiculed in the media and by politicians for being weak.

    As for mistreatment of migrant workers, really? Go look at the incidence of cancer and liver failure in migrant workers picking crops in California, Texas, and Florida. Pesticides can be hazardous to your health. After that, take a look at the number of mutilations in our factory meat processing plants in the Midwest.

    Stealing from your migrant workers? Try Walmart and McDonalds who pay their workers so low that they often have to be on food stamps. They do it legally, the frequency that small employers steal from migrant works has been shown to be even higher.

    Now you can complain that Qatar bought themselves a World Cup, but the likes of the Kochs, and the Adelsons are buying the U.S., lock stock and barrel. Of course the Qataries only had to pay five million in bribes, and it was illegal, the Supreme Court made it legal to buy our politicians, a much smarter path if you ask me, but it costs a lot more. By that measure the Qataries are better businessmen.

    Citizens of the U.S. like to wear that freedom label on their sleeve, but they forget that it was made in China in factories that essentially use slave labor. Speaking of China, did I mention that our rate of capital punishment is one of the highest in the world, right up there with, you guessed it, China. Not that we’re violent or anything.

    • Comrade23 - Jun 2, 2014 at 11:27 AM

      Yeah, but if you take out Texas, our rate of capital punishment goes down about 40 places. So that’s gotta count for something.

      • lyleoross - Jun 2, 2014 at 12:30 PM

        Did I mention I live in Texas? I’m so proud… And of course we favor minorities in our treatment.

    • chunkala - Jun 2, 2014 at 5:00 PM

      Same nonsense that Europe always brings up in regards to US. Sure, the US has murders and gun violence whereas Europe has a much lower murder rate, however, they also fail to mention that they start a war every 20 to 40 years that kills millions of people across the continent.

      • lyleoross - Jun 2, 2014 at 7:06 PM

        I don’t recall mentioning Europe in this. I did an indirect comparison between our view of Qatar and our own behavior. What’s more, I don’t much care what Europe does, I care what my country does, and it isn’t pretty. It hardly seems fair to whine about Qatar’s behavior when our own is quite possibly worse. Last, if we’re going to say “hey, we’re better than Europe because they start world wars every 20 to 40 years,” then doesn’t Qatar get to say, “hey we’re better than the U.S. because they start wars every six months or so?”

  9. daddeeo - Jun 2, 2014 at 10:40 AM

    Ummm Soccer?

    THANKS to EVERY REPLIER BEFORE ME for verifying that international sporting events can not be above politics! Each and everytime there is some controversay related to “fairness” in a world event these preceding comments should be read aloud!

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