The president-elect of Brazil, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (PT), stated that it is not the moment to “judge” the choice of Qatar as host of the World Cup. The competition starts this Sunday (20), with the match between the hosts and Ecuador.
“I don’t know what the criteria were for Qatar to be chosen. In any case, it’s not up to us to judge the criteria. It’s already been chosen, it’s already been decided”, said Lula in Lisbon after a meeting with the Portuguese prime minister, António Coast.
“The selections are already called up, they are already training. What we want is that the players play well to put on a show for all of us”, added the petista.
On the sporting front, Lula said he “sincerely” and “humbly” believes that Brazil will win the World Cup.
“After 20 years, it’s time for Brazil to become world champions again,” he said, in an interview alongside the Portuguese premier.
Qatar is criticized for its treatment of migrant workers — many of whom built the World Cup stadiums and infrastructure —, the LGBTQIA+ community — homosexuality is a crime in the country — and women.
The country was involved in a new controversy on Friday (18), when it prohibited the sale of beer in the World Cup stadiums. Budweiser, one of the sponsors of the event, was surprised.
Former Fifa president JoSeph Blatter said earlier this month that choosing the Arab country to host the event was a mistake.