Leon Goretzka insists the German FA need to send a clear signal against the World Cup being held in Saudi Arabia in 2034… after the ‘mistake’ of last year’s tournament being held in Qatar
- Saudi Arabia is set to host the 2034 World Cup after their only rivals pulled out
- German midfielder Goretzka has urged the country’s FA to speak out about it
- It’s a three-team title race… Toney could lead Arsenal to glory: It’s All Kicking Off
Bayern Munich star Leon Goretzka has urged the German Football Association to send a clear signal against Saudi Arabia playing host to the 2034 World Cup.
FIFA effectively confirmed that Saudi Arabia would hold the tournament, after stating the country was the only bidder for the tournament.
Their only rivals Australia, announced previously that they would not bid for the hosting rights.
Goretzka, speaking ahead of Germany’s upcoming friendlies with Turkey and Austria, hit out at Qatar being awarded last year’s World Cup, and said that the ‘mistake has not been corrected’ with Saudi Arabia now set to host the tournament.
Asked if the German FA needs to make a clear signal against the awarding of the tournament to Saudi Arabia, he said: ‘I definitely see it that way, that still stands, the mistake was in the awarding (of the 2022 tournament to Qatar) and in the criteria that played a role.
Leon Goretzka has urged the German FA to give a clear signal against Saudi Arabia hosting the 2034 World Cup
FIFA effectively confirmed Saudi Arabia as hosts after announcing no other countries put forward a bid
FIFA still needs to rubber stamp Saudi Arabia as the host – a decision likely to be made late next year – but that seems a formality (Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman pictured)
‘It has obviously not been corrected, and that’s definitely not good.’
FIFA still needs to rubber stamp Saudi Arabia as the host – a decision that is likely to be made late next year – but that now seems a formality.
German players famously covered their mouths ahead of their World Cup clash with Japan last year, in protests of FIFA’s decision to ban an LGBTQ armband.
Their show of defiance in the Khalifa Stadium in Doha came after the world football governing body threatened sanctions against teams and their captains if they went ahead with their plan to wear the ‘OneLove’ armband – which had been viewed as a symbolic protest against laws in Qatar, where homosexuality is illegal.
Qatar’s hosting of the 2022 World Cup drew criticism because of its stance on same-sex relationships, its human rights record and its treatment of migrant workers.
Similarly, same-sex relationships are criminalised in Saudi Arabia, with the Kingdom also criticised over its human rights issues.
The 2034 tournament is expected to be held in the winter as temperatures in Saudi Arabia in the summer months can exceed 43 degrees Celsius.
Amnesty International, a vocal critic of Saudi Arabia’s push into elite-level sport, said last month that the Kingdom would need to give FIFA ‘clear and binding commitments’ on areas such as human rights, in order to be awarded the prestige of hosting a World Cup.
‘Human rights commitments must be agreed with potential hosts before final decisions on holding the tournaments are made,’ they said.
‘The best chance for Fifa to obtain binding guarantees to protect workers’ rights, ensure freedom of expression and prevent discrimination linked to the World Cup is during the host selection process – not after the hosts have been confirmed and tournament preparation has begun.’
Before 2034, the 2026 World Cup will be held in the United States, while hosting duties between for the 2030 tournament will be split across six different countries.
Spain, Morocco, and Portugal will be the main tournament host, but in honour of the special anniversary of the first-ever World Cup, Uruguay, Paraguay, and Argentina will all host opening matches.
German players covered their mouths ahead of their World Cup clash with Japan in Doha in protest of FIFA’s decision to ban an LGBTQ armband – with homosexuality illegal in Qatar
The 2034 tournament is expected to be held in the winter as temperatures in Saudi Arabia in the summer months can exceed 43 degrees (Saudi Arabia pictured at last year’s World Cup)
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