January 27, 2023

EXCLUSIVE: FIFA is embroiled in a series of legal disputes with Qatar’s World Cup hosts over contractors – with Budweiser and other official suppliers seeking compensation

  • FIFA’s relationship with the Qatari authorities is said to be at an all-time low
  • During the World Cup, FIFA sent legal letters to Qatar’s top committee
  • Sports mail understands that letters focus on contractual issues that have arisen
  • For example, Budweiser, the official beer sponsor of FIFA, owes a fee
  • EXCLUSIVE: Qatar officials attempted to ban Budweiser from the brand’s OWN hotel

FIFA has become embroiled in a series of legal disputes with Qatari authorities, with relations between the two main World Cup organizers at an all-time low as the tournament moves into the knockout stages.

Sports mail has learned that FIFA sent several legal letters to Qatar’s top committee during the World Cup and is awaiting formal replies.

The legal letters are said to address contractual issues that occurred before and during the tournament, which will ultimately amount to a battle over financial liability.

FIFA (pictured left, FIFA President Gianni Infantino) is embroiled in legal disputes in Qatar

FIFA (pictured left, FIFA President Gianni Infantino) is embroiled in legal disputes in Qatar

Budweiser stands could only sell Bud Zero in stadiums due to the ban on alcohol

Budweiser stands could only sell Bud Zero in stadiums due to the ban on alcohol

Alcoholic Budweiser beers are only available in stadiums for those in suites at £20,000 per match

Alcoholic Budweiser beers are only available in stadiums for those in suites at £20,000 per match

Budweiser, FIFA’s official beer supplier, is due to pay damages after the Supreme Committee drastically halted the sale of alcohol from stadiums 48 hours before the opening match between Qatar and Ecuador, while there are numerous other issues to be resolved in relation to other World Cup suppliers.

The tension between FIFA and the Supreme Committee was apparent on Thursday in their conflicting responses to reports of the death of a migrant worker at Saudi Arabia’s base camp during the group stage, as revealed by The Athletic.

While FIFA said they were “deeply saddened by this tragedy” and “expressed condolences and thoughts to the working-class family,” the Supreme Committee said the incident occurred on properties outside their jurisdiction and has transferred the matter to the Qatari government.

Nasser Al Khater, Chief Executive of the 2022 World Cup in Doha, said 'death is a part of life' in response to the tragic death of yet another migrant worker who died at a training site

Nasser Al Khater, Chief Executive of the 2022 World Cup in Doha, said ‘death is a part of life’ in response to the tragic death of yet another migrant worker who died at a training site

Nasser Al Khater, chief executive of the Supreme Committee, even made the extraordinary comment that the death was a natural occurrence.

“Death is a natural part of life, whether at work or in your sleep,” he said.

“We are in the middle of a World Cup. And we have a successful World Cup. And this is something you want to talk about now?’

FIFA declined to comment on their legal issues with the Supreme Committee.

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