The Gulf Crisis and Qatar's FIFA World Cup 2022

  • 2 years   ago

TV Rights

The shuttering of Al Jazeera was one of the UAE-Saudi-led alliance's main conditions in order to lift the boycott on Qatar. beIN sports which was formerly known as Al Jazeera Sport, holds broadcasting rights for major competitions, including England's Premier League, Spain's La Liga, the 2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cups, the UEFA Champions League, the AFC Champions League, the Asian Cup, the CAF Champions League, and the Africa Cup of Nations. The ban denied the fans from watching their favorite football competitions. 


However, the ban was lifted when Qatar won more than a symbolic  victory with a decision by UEFA, the European Soccer Body to award beIn the rights to broadcast UEFA Champions League and Europa League in Middle Eastern and North African region. The AFC and CAF played their part in favor of lifting the ban as well. They respectfully criticized the ban and gave statements which mainly stated that football should stay separated from politics. 

No Comments by FIFA and AFC

FIFA and AFC remained silent when Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Bahrain refused to participate in the Gulf Cup. It was supposed to be held by Qatar in 2017. The boycott was the reason why Qatar gave away the hosting rights to Kuwait. FIFA president Gianni Infantino didn't penalize the three Gulf States for being involved in mixing sports with politics. He only admired Qatar for their "honorable gesture" and attended the tournament's opening match. FIFA also remained silent when because of political reasons the Saudi, Emirati and Bahraini national squads refused to partake in news conferences in Kuwait during the tournament in which Qatari media were present.

However, the CAF was a little more forward than the AFC. They didn't support any club or country that wanted to mix sports with politics and warned them that they could be penalized in doing so. 

A few Documents from an email account of Youssef al-Otaiba, the UAE Ambassador to the United States were leaked which showed that he had planned a complex financial statement to manipulate in undermining Qatar’s currency and rob the Gulf state of its hosting rights.

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