Former Fifa president Sepp Blatter made a shocking admission before the World Cup | Tech US News

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First published on November 8, 2022 at 6:07 PM IST

In a shock admission just two weeks before the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, former FIFA president Sepp Blatter said the decision to award the hosting rights of the major event to the Middle Eastern country was a ‘mistake’.

In 2010, Blatter presided over FIFA’s controversial executive committee decision that gave Russia and Qatar the right to host the 2018 and 2022 World Cups.

The event had to be postponed to November and December due to the heat, and Qatar has come under fire for its treatment of migrant workers and discriminatory LGBT+ laws.

Also Read: Qatar 2022 World Cup: FIFA urges teams to focus on football; avoid ideological and political battles

FIFA’s decision to host the World Cup in Qatar was also met with skepticism because many of the executive committee members who voted in 2010 have since been found guilty or charged with criminal or ethical violations.

Despite being cleared of fraud charges in July after paying £1.7m to Michel Platini, Blatter insists he did not vote for Qatar and remains banned from football over the incident.

The 86-year-old, who led FIFA from 1998 to 2015 before being banned for six years in a corruption scandal, gave his first interview since being acquitted in July.

Blatter admitted it was a mistake to award Qatar the hosting honor because of its size, and claimed the USA had FIFA’s preference to host the 2022 event before being awarded the 2026 format.

football Qatar was a mistake Former Fifa president Sepp Blatter made a shocking admission before the 2022 World Cup

“Choosing Qatar was a mistake,” Blatter told Swiss newspaper Tages-Anzeiger. “At the time, we actually agreed in the executive committee that Russia should get the World Cup in 2018 and the USA in 2022. It would be a gesture of peace if the two long-time political adversaries hosted the World Cup one later. another,” he added.

“It’s too small a country. Soccer and the World Cup are too big for that,” Blatter remarked.

When asked if he felt responsible for the decision, Blatter replied: “It is clear to me: Qatar is a mistake. The choice was bad. I wonder: why is the new president of FIFA [Gianni Infantino] do you live in Qatar? He cannot be the head of the local organization of the World Cup. That’s not his job. There are two organizing committees for this – local and FIFA.”

Also Read: Qatar 2022 World Cup: Is Ronaldo happy with Brazil squad? Legend names one player who earned the spot

“I can only repeat: the award to Qatar was a mistake and I was responsible for it as the president at the time,” he said. “Now that the World Cup is imminent, I am happy that, with a few exceptions, no footballers are boycotting the World Cup,” Blatter added.

Blatter claimed that, despite the Russian invasion of Ukraine, he does not regret awarding the World Cup to that country. Blatter denied claims that Russia used the World Cup as a “propaganda platform” and said he was no longer in communication with Vladimir Putin, who supported the conflict in Ukraine.

“Many others also use sport for political purposes. I’m not a judge and I don’t want to judge that,” concluded the former Fifa boss.

Last updated on 08 Nov 2022, 18:07 IST

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