Gary Lineker has revealed that he did think about boycotting his media duties at the Qatar World Cup due to the controversy around the tournament.
The World Cup in the Middle East gets underway next weekend, as host nation Qatar face Ecuador as the tournament officially begins.
However, there has been huge amounts of controversy surrounding the upcoming 22nd edition of the famed competition.
Lineker is just one in a long line of sporting figures who have condemned the decision to allow Qatar to host the tournament.
The former England striker revealed to i Newspaper that he thought about neglecting his media duties for the BBC for this tournament, and said that he opted to not be a part of the draw.
“I thought about boycotting the World Cup but we’re there to report on it, not support it,” the Match of the Day presenter told the publication.
He added: “I was asked to do the draw for the finals but I didn’t because that would make me hypocritical.”
Qatar was given the honour of hosting the tournament back in 2010, when they received a full backing from Football's world governing body FIFA.
However, the President at the time, Sepp Blater, has recently come out and revealed that the awarding to Qatar was a 'mistake' and a 'bad choice'.
Another example of wrongdoings was revealed from the Netflix series FIFA Uncovered, in which a member of Qatar’s World Cup bid has claimed that three African officials were offered bribes to back the nation’s bid to host the tournament.
Outside of the bribery allegations, there are heavy criticisms over the human rights of migrant workers in Qatar, as well as their views on homosexuality.
Recently a Qatar World Cup ambassador was criticised for his comments on homosexuality, who defended his religion amidst widespread criticism.
Lineker scored 48 goals in 80 matches for England and was this country's first Golden Boot winner at the tournament, before Harry Kane matched his achievement four years ago in Russia.
He performed extremely well for England in the 12 matches he played across the 1986 and 1990 tournaments, with 10 goals to his name as England reached the quarter-finals in 1986 before losing out heartbreakingly on penalties to Germany in 1990.
He will be on presenting duties for the BBC in Qatar and will soon be heading out to cover the tournament.
Featured Image Credit: Alamy
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