The FIFA World Cup 2022 Controversy Contradicts The Fans’ Beliefs In The Sport

Billy Quinn, Reporter

The 2022 FIFA World Cup is coming up, and some serious controversy surrounds it.

With issues of human labor rights violations, corruption, and abuse of the LGBTQ+ community, the question is raised: Should we be boycotting the 2022 FIFA World Cup?

The World Cup will take place in Qatar November 20 – December 18.

Due to the lack of historical football in Qatar, they needed to build seven stadiums for the tournament. Since 2011, upwards of six thousand from South Asia have died in Qatar, alongside several accounts of beatings and sexual harrassment of the LGTBQ+ community have put Qatar under fierce scrutiny. 

Due to all this controversy, it’s now November 2022, and the hype surrounding the World Cup is almost non-existent despite the event happening in just a few days.

Unfortunately, the footballing world has also fallen victim to corruption, with it being revealed that FIFA had accepted bribes from the Qatari Football Association, guaranteeing the country to host the 2022 World Cup, and many of the board members being arrested and banned from the sport.

All this contention gives countries all the ammunition they would need to boycott the tournament, and it certainly should be a possibility. For example: in 1980, the Olympic games in Moscow were boycotted after the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan the year prior, with the U.S leading the spurn, followed by 64 other nations. This type of action is yet to be taken in the footballing world. So if the countries don’t plan on boycotting, it’s up to the fans. 

Football has always been the “people’s” game, a path from poverty to riches all over the world. The World Cup is the pinnacle of the sport. So why should we, trying to be the “woke activists” that we’re told to be, have the right to take away the most beloved tournament across the world?

Football is fueled by the fans, and their passion for the beautiful game, not corporate greed and corruption.

That being said, the human rights that are being violated in Qatar, need to be a topic of discussion. Over the last few weeks, fans around Europe have been vocalizing their concerns, with signs of “BOYCOTT QATAR” becoming a familiar sight at Bundesliga games. As the tournament approaches, the fans’ voices are becoming louder and louder but realistically I think it’s too late.

Thinking in an idealistic manner, a reschedule of the tournament any time in the past eight years to the United States seemed to be the most logical solution. In Los Angeles alone you have three stadiums fit to hold a World Cup match (Sofi, Coliseum, and Rose Bowl). But the tournament is in less than a week, so the options are few and far between. 

Long story short, the FIFA World Cup should not be happening in Qatar. But it is, and with the growing doubt that countries will boycott, it seems as though we will see the most winter-y, 4a.m.-y, and turkey-filled World Cup in history.