World Cup

Qatar 2022 CEO urges Gareth Southgate to 'pick words very carefully' over human rights issues

Tom Gott
Southgate has spoken on Qatar's human rights issues
Southgate has spoken on Qatar's human rights issues / Sebastian Frej/MB Media/GettyImages
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The CEO of Qatar 2022, Nasser Al Khater, has told Gareth Southgate to 'pick his words very carefully' when discussing the Gulf state's human rights issues.

Southgate has joined the numerous critics of Qatar's treatment of migrant workers, recently claiming he was 'quite clear on the areas of concern about this tournament', alluding to the treatment of those who built the stadium.

Al Khater was given the chance to respond to the Three Lions boss by Sky Sports News, and the Qatar chief was less than impressed with the comments.

"My question would be, who from the England squad has come to Qatar? My question to the coach is, has he been to Qatar? Is he basing his opinions and his public statements on what he has read?" he said.

"Because it is kind of an issue if you're basing your opinions and you are very vocal about that based on things you have read. Somebody with a lot of influence, such as Southgate, somebody with a big audience that listens to what he says, ought to pick his words very carefully.

"And I think that before making statements like that, when it comes to the workers, he needs to come here and speak to workers and understand what workers get out of being here.

"There are isolated cases, those are the cases that make it to the media, however, I can assure him that if he comes here and speaks to the majority of the workers, they will tell you how they put their children through university, they will tell you how they've built their houses for them and their families.

"And these are the stories that nobody hears, so I look forward to welcoming him here, I look forward to meeting him at the draw and he can listen to my opinion, he does not have to believe it, but at least he needs to go that far to understand different opinions and different cultures.

"No country is perfect, let's get that right and I do not think anybody can claim that, so if somebody is coming and claiming they are a perfect country, they need to really take a look at themselves."

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