Qatar spent £117m to win 2022 World Cup bid
A BBC Panorama documentary being broadcast on Monday night claims that Qatar spent a massive £117million on their successful bid to host the 2022 World Cup.
The evidence came from Lord Triesman, the former FA chairman and leader of England’s doomed 2018 bid until forced to resign from both positions following a female civil servant tape-recording unproven allegations he made about Spain and Russia attempting to bribe referees.
Triesman tells Panorama that the Qatar figure – almost six times what England spent on their 2018 campaign – came from contacts close to British intelligence.
Triesman said: ‘I was told by two sources that have always been very reliable with good information, good intelligence that the sum Qatar spent on their bid was £117m.’
Qatar’s bid chairman did not respond to the claims by the Panorama programme ‘FIFA, Sepp Blatter and Me’ made by veteran investigative reporter Andrew Jennings
Lord Triesman added: ‘I take the straightforward view that it should be possible when you look at the money that people have spent to know exactly how it was spent and whether it was legitimate or not.’
The FIFA corruption scandal escalated last week when US Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced a further 16 FIFA officials and associates have been indicted as part of the FBI’s ongoing investigation. And Swiss authorities are carrying out a separate probe into the murky 2018 and 2022 World Cup bids.
The FBI net is closing on banned president Sepp Blatter – not only over his alleged involvement in a £6.6m bribe paid by the South African Government via FIFA for disgraced Jack Warner’s 2010 World Cup vote. But also over his alleged role in the £66m bribes scandal surrounding FIFA’s defunct marketing partners ISL with former President Joao Havelange and arch rogue Ricardo Teixeira amongst those who took mountains of money in return for lucrative TV and marketing rights.
Blatter denied knowing about the bribes but Panorama has seen a letter obtained by the FBI written by Havelange which says: ‘I emphasise that Mr Blatter had full knowledge of all activities’ and was ‘always apprised’ of them.
The FBI say: ‘Among other things the prosecutor is investigating Havelange’s statements implicating Blatter.’
Meanwhile, UEFA’s Michel Platini, whom the ethics investigative committee has recommended is banned for life along with Blatter over the £1.35m consultancy fee paid nine years late to Platini for FIFA work, will produce some flimsy evidence at his ethics hearing next week.
A French newspaper reports that a document distributed to the UEFA ExCo in 1998 claims: ‘There has been talk about one million Swiss francs as salary.’ dailymail.co.uk
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