Image Free – Qatar 2022: World Cup Too Political… I24NEWS

If not “politicizing sports”, what is excluding Russian athletes from international competitions?

Emmanuel Macron kicked off the FIFA World Cup in Qatar in a unique way: “We should not politicize sport,” he answered questions about the controversy surrounding the Emirati-hosted competition. These cute fairy phrases are enough to make you smile. This world championship held in Qatar is already an example of competition with political, geopolitical, social and even legal contours.

Football is a political issue of first importance, it is clear, at least for leaders in France, who are always in search of a lost zeal: popularity and connection to the country. How can the French president seriously think that such an endorsement can close the issue?

Football is a political issue of primary importance, it is obvious

Emmanuel Macron, like his predecessors, politicized football without hesitation. Who advised Kylian Mbappe, who wanted to leave PSG, saying, “You are an important athlete for the country, I need you to stay in France”? According to Mbappe’s statement in a recent interview with an American magazine, this is Emmanuel Macron.

Adrian DENNIS/AFPPeople walk through a show in front of the FIFA World Cup plaque in Doha on November 16, 2022 ahead of the Qatar 2022 World Cup soccer tournament

Who went to Clairefontaine to give their instructions on the eve of the last World Cup held in Russia in 2018? Emmanuel Macron. “You have only one goal, to win,” he said, then instilled his character as president-manager. Rejecting metaphors about the comparative qualities of the Blues coach and the France captain in a TV interview.

A few weeks later, an informal photo taken by a Russian journalist in Russia will become the object of communication between the young French president, galvanized by the tricolor arms, and the energetic and fiery leader from the stands during the final. You said not to politicize sports? There are many examples proving the opposite.

Alexey NIKOLSKY / SPUTNIK / AFPFrench President Emmanuel Macron commented on the final match of the Russia 2018 World Cup held between France and Croatia at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on July 15, 2018.

Remember how Jacques Chirac, at the bottom of the hole in 1998, a year after his ill-fated collapse, mastered the fantastic saga of the Blues never chasing football. By practically taking up residence in the players’ dressing rooms, practicing the ritual of kissing goalkeeper Barthes’ bald head and displaying the World Cup during a memorable garden party on July 14, 1998. The result: a significant increase. requests. Hats off to the political artist.

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What does it mean to “not politicize sport” when many Russian athletes have been stigmatized or banned from international competitions under the sanctions imposed on Russia after the February 2022 attack on Ukraine? No president was heard at that time.

This time it’s actually about masking a malfunction

This time it is actually about covering up a malfunction, given the importance of the relationship between France and Qatar. The list is full of complaints and controversies about this World Cup: trampled individual liberties, ill-treated foreign workers, ignorance of the environmental impact of hosting this competition in a country with a naturally extremely hot climate.

Odd Andersen/AFP
Odd Andersen/AFPA road sign for the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup is seen next to a highway near Abu Samra in western Qatar on November 15, 2022.

However, Qatar, the influential emirate, is already a political winner: this small gas state has been the center of the world for several days. The area is also geopolitical: for the first time, an Israeli office has been allowed to cover the event, and a Turkish company is organizing direct flights for supporters between Tel Aviv and Doha. This is an opportunity to secretly connect before the World Cup.

Qatar, an influential emirate, is already a political winner

It will be between Israel and Qatar before and after 2022. Of course, the show will not be limited to exploiting football players. Teams such as Denmark and Australia intend to protest by calling back LGBT rights, which are being repressed in Qatar. The footballers, including the French, made it clear whether they would talk about how this World Cup was organized.

Emmanuel Macron still had a word of common sense in the second part of his statement: “It is when the competition is awarded that you have to ask questions about the country that received it.” In this regard, the president is right: Qatar’s detractors did not discover that the World Cup was held last month.

“I will open an investigation into the World Cup in Qatar. There are a lot of gray areas.”

One institution asked itself this question: justice. The National Financial Prosecutor’s Office has opened an investigation into suspicions of corruption in the conditions of awarding the World Cup to Qatar. Case in point: Questions about the roles of Michel Platini and Nicolas Sarkozy – close to the emirate – during a crucial lunch at the Elysée. Shortly before the start of the investigation, Magistrate Eliane Houlette, who was the head of the PNF at the time, announced her decision to the author of these lines: “I will open an investigation into the World Cup in Qatar. There are too many gray areas. From which action. Proof we haven’t heard about the 2022 World Cup.

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