Former FIFA President Sepp Blatter Claims Nicolas Sarkozy Pressured Officials To Choose Qatar For World Cup

(THOMAS SAMSON/AFP via Getty Images)

Andrew Powell Sports and Entertainment Blogger
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Another day, another corruption allegation coming out of FIFA.

The upcoming World Cup being in Qatar is both a “mistake” and “bad choice,” according to former FIFA President Sepp Blatter, who has also alleged that the decision to hold it in the tiny Middle Eastern nation was because of apparent secret political pressure.

Qatar landed the World Cup because of former UEFA President Michael Platini’s actions, who was under pressure from the then-French President Nicolas Sarkozy, Blatter claimed.

“For me it is clear: Qatar is a mistake. The choice was bad,” Blatter told Switzerland newspaper Tages-Anzeiger. “At the time, we actually agreed in the executive committee that Russia should get the 2018 World Cup and the USA that of 2022. It would have been a gesture of peace if the two longstanding political opponents had hosted the World Cup one after the other.”

Questioned about why he felt Qatar was a “bad” choice, Blatter didn’t give the human rights answer that most would have expected, he just simply and hilariously said: “It’s too small a country. Football and the World Cup are too big for that.”

What’s funny about this is that Platini has already addressed Blatter before — who has previously made these claims — and outright admitted that handing the World Cup to Qatar was because of “political and economic influences.” (RELATED: ‘Can’t Wait For North Korea’: Popular Brewery Protests World Cup With Mass Advertising)

In other words, soccer executives got paid.

Do they really think we’re this stupid? How many examples over the years have we seen out of the world of soccer that involved some kind of corruption from some organization, namely FIFA?

Quite a bit.

Vox published an excellent listicle in 2015 highlighting FIFA corruption. Here are several examples:

  • FIFA’s disregard for human rights goes back to the 1970s
  • The father of modern FIFA took millions of dollars in bribes
  • FIFA’s current president was embroiled in a scandal from the moment he was elected
  • Brazil’s incredibly costly World Cup underlined that it’s a better deal for FIFA than for the home country
  • A power broker for soccer in the Western Hemisphere has had an astonishing number of scandals
  • Qatar allegedly bought the 2022 World Cup — and it’s killing thousands of people to get ready
  • When FIFA has tried to reform, it ended up burying the evidence
  • A challenger to Blatter tried to buy the FIFA election in 2011
  • Exhibition matches at the World Cup were fixed

FIFA is definitely the Washington, D.C., of the sports world.

And speaking of D.C., it’s quite irritating that latest corruption allegations surrounding the Qatar World Cup affects Americans. Quite frankly, it was supposed to be our World Cup, and now we’re going to be forced to wake up at 5 o’clock in the friggin’ morning to just see some of these games.

An employee stands in front of the logo of Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup football tournament at the Host Country Media Centre in Doha on November 3, 2022. (Photo by KARIM JAAFAR/AFP via Getty Images)

An employee stands in front of the logo of Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup football tournament at the Host Country Media Centre in Doha on November 3, 2022. (Photo by KARIM JAAFAR/AFP via Getty Images)

I’m sure Americans will be on top of that with our devoted passion for soccer. 

Yours truly will be enjoying the World Cup, despite all of the BS surrounding it, and for one reason: To see Christian Pulisic and the United States of America win the tournament. Yes, I said win the entire damn thing.

With all of the hype that our media here in the States keeps putting on our team and how much they keep promoting us in the World Cup, I’m expecting the U.S. to roll into Qatar and bring home that weird-looking trophy in vengeance of us not hosting the event — in true dominating ‘Merica fashion!

As far as that actually happening… well, that’s another story.