FIFA President Gianni Infantino defends Qatar World Cup hosts and accuses Europe of hypocrisy
Why it matters
The World Cup is one of the biggest sporting events in the world and the choice of Qatar as the host has been controversial due to the country's human rights record and treatment of migrant workers. Infantino's comments are significant as he is the head of FIFA, the governing body of world football, and his defence of Qatar is likely to be seen as controversial by some.
What the papers say
The Telegraph, The Times of Israel, Reuters, The Times, The Independent, Euronews, Politico, AP News
How we got here
Qatar has faced significant criticism for its treatment of migrant workers, as well as for discrimination against women and LGBTQ+ individuals. The rights of the LGBTQ+ community and migrant workers in Qatar have been heavily in focus in the years leading up to the finals, particularly in Europe. Infantino's comments come on the eve of the World Cup in Qatar, which has been dogged for years by criticism of the emirate's record on human rights and treatment of migrant workers who built stadiums and infrastructure.
More on these topics
Giovanni Vincenzo "Gianni" Infantino is a Swiss–Italian football administrator and the current president of FIFA. He was elected President of FIFA during the 2016 FIFA Extraordinary Congress on 26 February 2016.
Qatar, officially the State of Qatar, is a country located in Western Asia, occupying the small Qatar Peninsula on the northeastern coast of the Arabian Peninsula.
FIFA is a non-profit organization which describes itself as an international governing body of association football, fútsal, beach soccer, and efootball. It is the highest governing body of football.
The FIFA World Cup, often simply called the World Cup, is an international association football competition contested by the senior men's national teams of the members of the Fédération Internationale de Football Association, the sport's global governin