FIFA: Probe Into Qatar World Cup Bid Delayed, Report Won’t Be Made Public

The report, expected to be out in July, will now only be ready by September with officials confirming that it will not be made public.



FIFA has confirmed that its investigation into the possibility of ethics violation in the World Cup bidding process for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments will be delayed by over two months.

The report is being prepared by former US attorney Michael Garcia, who has spent over 18 months investigating allegations of bribery and corruption in the awarding of the 2018 and 2022 World Cups to Russia and Qatar.

Garcia was due to submit the report to the investigatory chamber of the FIFA Ethics Committee by the end of July.

However, a statement from FIFA said: “We expect to deliver our report to the adjudicatory chamber by the first week of September 2014.”

Meanwhile a FIFA spokesman also confirmed to World Football Insider that the findings of the report would not be made public.

“Please note that in accordance with art 28 and 36 of the FIFA Code of Ethics the report will be handed over to the adjudicatory chamber but only the final decision of the adjudicatory chamber may be made public,” he said.

Last month, Garcia said he had interviewed every bid team and all the FIFA members who cast votes in the secret ballot.

“No one should assume the information we have or do not have,” he said.

“It’s impossible to know if new information will emerge in the future. We are always willing to listen to what people have to say and to anything presented to us.

“We will follow our process through. We believe we will produce a report that is comprehensive and fair to all parties,” he added.

Qatar has faced strong criticism since it won the bid to host the 2022 World Cup tournament in December 2010, beating rivals Australia, US, Japan and South Korea.

It has been constantly accused of corruption and in June, the UK’s Sunday Times reported that former Qatari football official Mohamed Bin Hammam paid $5 million to FIFA representatives in exchange for their support for Qatar’s bid.

The Gulf state has however denied all the allegations, and says it won the tournament purely on the basis of merit.

In an interview in April with UK radio station talkSPORT, Hassan Al-Thawadi, the head of Qatar’s 2022 World Cup organising committee, said: “We did not buy the World Cup. It’s as simple as that.

“I go back to a lot of people that look at us and say it’s shocking that we won and I go back to the simple thing – why we won. It’s because we worked hard, harder than a lot of people.”

If the corruption allegations are found to be true and Qatar is stripped of the 2022 World Cup hosting rights, the Gulf state’s real GDP growth will slow down by at least 0.5 per cent annually, a report from the Bank of America Merrill Lynch recently found.

Direct world cup spending by Qatar is estimated to be $16 billion, amounting to 7.5 per cent of its GDP, the report added.