FIFA President Defends 2022 World Cup Host Qatar, Slams Media For 'Attacking' Country
FIFA President Sepp Blatter condemned European media for "attacking" 2022 World Cup host Qatar, days after "slamming European countries and companies over the controversial tournament," according to the AFP. Blatter said that the media "had been unfair to Qatar as he made an impassioned defence of the event" to delegates at the Asian Football Confederation awards in Kuala Lumpur. Blatter: "It is not fair when the international media and especially European media are taking up the focus of an Arab country here in Asia, and attacking, criticizing this country." He added, "We are defending it. We have taken the decision to play a World Cup in the Arab world and we have taken the decision to play in Qatar and we will go and play this... in 2022 in Qatar." AFC President Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa "agreed that media criticism of Qatar had been 'too much' and he backed the Gulf nation to hold one of the most successful World Cups" (AFP, 11/26).