Sun, 10 Mar 2019 - 11:28 GMT
In 2010, then Fifa president Sepp Blatter revealed Qatar as the host of the 2022 World Cup ( Getty )
CAIRO – 10 March 2019: The state of Qatar secretly offered $400m to Fifa just 21 days before world football’s governing body controversially decided that the 2022 World Cup would be held in the tiny desert country, leaked documents have revealed according to The Sunday Times.
The tiny Gulf state was desperate to host the world’s biggest sporting event.
The leaked documents show that executives from the Qatari state-run broadcaster Al Jazeera signed a television contract making the huge offer as the bidding campaigns to host the World Cup were reaching a climax.
The contract included an unprecedented success fee of $100m that would be paid into a designated Fifa account only if Qatar was successful in the World Cup ballot in 2010.
The Sunday Times report said it had seen documents that read: “In the event that the 2022 competition is awarded to the state of Qatar, Al Jazeera shall, in addition to the . . . rights fee, pay to Fifa into the designated account the monetary amount of $100m.”
It is also claimed in the report that a further $480 mln was offered three years after the original payment – pushing the amount Fifa was offered by Qatar officials to $880 mln in a bid to host and retain the right to host the 2022 World Cup.
The contract now forms part of a bribery inquiry by Swiss police according to the The Sunday Times report.
It has long been claimed that Qatar offered bribes to Fifa when it submitted its bid to host the 2022 – this latest report will likely fuel further suspicion that Qatar effectively bought the right to host the World Cup tournament.