Qatar World Cup head say blockade poses ‘no risk’ to event

first_imgFILE- In this May 14, 2010 file photo, a Qatari woman walks in front of the city skyline in Doha, Qatar. The U.S. military says it has halted some military exercises with Gulf countries over the ongoing diplomatic dispute targeting Qatar. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili, File)LONDON — The regional blockade on Qatar poses “no risk” to the 2022 World Cup going ahead, the tournament head said on Friday, maintaining that logistical obstacles are being overcome and building work is continuing with only “minimal” cost increases.The energy-rich nation’s land border and its air and sea routes have been closed off for four months since Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates launched an economic boycott. It has forced World Cup organizers to find alternative sources for materials to complete the venues being used by the region’sfirst major soccer tournament.ADVERTISEMENT It’s too early to present Duterte’s ‘legacy’ – Lacson Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next LATEST STORIES Winner at last as UE picks up first victory, sends UST to 0-7 Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Mos Burger to open in Manila; teases with a pop-up DAY6 is for everybody Jake says relationship with Shaina ‘goes beyond physical attraction’ Margot Robbie talks about filming ‘Bombshell’s’ disturbing sexual harassment scene How to help the Taal evacuees Nueva Ecija warehouse making fake cigarettes raided, 29 Chinese workers nabbed Only the Khalifa International Stadium, which will also host the world track championships in 2019, has been completed. Qatar is building another seven stadiums for use by 32 teams at the tournament in five years.“I’m very happy to say that our project scale is on time and there is no significant impact on our projects,” Al Thawadi said. “As of today we haven’t seen a significant impact on the cost. There might have been some minimal increase in terms of establishing alternative supply chains but these have been absorbed very, very quickly and been normalized as these supply chains have been put in place.”Qatar is investing more than $150 billion on infrastructure to handle the World Cup in the tiny desert nation. Under pressure from activists, Qatar has been compelled to raise living standards and worker rights for the large migrant workforce being relied on to construct venues. Al Thawadi said organizers are “always improving” worker welfare standards.Qatar has also staved off calls for the country to be stripped of the World Cup after facing investigations into the conduct of its bid.FIFA ethics investigators found that the Qataris used a full range of lavishly funded state and sports agencies to deliver the victory in the 2010 vote. But a World Cup bidding report, published for the first time in June, concluded there was no “evidence of any improper activity by the bid team.”ADVERTISEMENT In ‘Jojo Rabbit,’ Comedy and Drama Collide View comments MOST READ OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ‘a duplicitous move’ – Lacson Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. “We have come under criticism and attack over the years, but we have always faced our critics,” Qatar World Cup supreme committee secretary general Hassan Al Thawadi told The Associated Press. “Our projects are going ahead as scheduled. This (blockade) is no risk in relation to the hosting of the World Cup.”The diplomatic crisis that has torn apart the Gulf Cooperation Council stems from allegations Qatar supports for extremist groups in the region, charges denied by Doha.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSRedemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie ThompsonSPORTSMayweather beats Pacquiao, Canelo for ‘Fighter of the Decade’SPORTSFederer blasts lack of communication on Australian Open smogWhen Qatar’s sole land border with Saudi Arabia was closed and sea traffic cut off, World Cup organizers were forced to instigate their “Plan B,” including brining in supplies from Turkey. The Qataris express confidence FIFA is not exploring a “Plan B” of its own for an alternate 2022 host.“Every project has contingency plans and we have had contingency plans in place from the very start,” Al Thawadi said in an interview during a visit to London to attend a summit staged by the Doha-based sports organization, Aspire Academy. “Once the blockade came into play we contacted the main contractors, we putin place alternative supply chains, we sourced alternative materials from alternate suppliers.”last_img read more

Three things we learned from Liverpool v Red Bull Salzburg

first_img0Shares0000LIVERPOOL, United Kingdom, Oct 3 – Liverpool beat Red Bull Salzburg 4-3 in a thrilling Champions League Group E clash on Wednesday.Here, AFP Sport looks at three things we learned from the Anfield goal-fest. Salah, Mane back in the grooveLiverpool star Mohamed Salah celebrates with Sadio Mane © AFP / Paul ELLISSadio Mane and Mohamed Salah settled their differences and got Liverpool’s Champions League campaign up and running with typically predatory finishing.Senegal forward Mane showed a rare display of emotion when he was substituted at Burnley last month, furious that Salah had not passed to him when he was in a better position.It led to suggestions that all was not harmonious between the pair, but Mane dismissed that this week when asked how his relationship was with the Egypt international.“It can happen, he didn’t see me and I was frustrated. We are really good friends,” Mane said.With the spat put to bed, Mane put Liverpool ahead when he exchanged passes with Roberto Firmino to clip home against his old club.Salah got the holders’ third goal in the 36th minute after Cican Stankovic spilled Firmino’s header.Then, with Liverpool shocked by Salzburg’s comeback from three goals down, Salah came to their rescue with a 69th minute winner that ensured the 100th European Cup match at Anfield was celebrated in fitting style.‘New Zlatan’ Haaland offers glimpse of teenage talentSalzburg’s Erling Haaland came off the bench to score against Liverpool © AFP / Paul ELLISErling Braut Haaland has been labelled the new Zlatan Ibrahimovic and the young Salzburg striker offered another glimpse of his tantalising potential in his substitute cameo.Haaland announced his arrival on the Champions League stage with a hat-trick in Salzburg’s 6-2 thrashing of Genk in their group opener.The lanky Norwegian’s dazzling display drew comparisons with Swedish legend Ibrahimovic, but Haaland’s name is already familiar to English audiences.Haaland is the son of former Leeds, Nottingham Forest and Manchester City midfielder Alf Inge.Alf Inge’s offspring is far more prolific in front of goal than his father and he arrived at Anfield with 17 goals already this season.The Leeds born 19-year-old sat out the weekend game against Austria Vienna because of an illness and that meant he was only fit enough to come off the bench against Liverpool.Introduced in the 56th minute, Haaland made up for lost time when he netted their equaliser with a cool finish from Takumi Minamino’s cross on the hour.Salzburg, playing in the Champions League group stage for the first time in 25 years, had come from 3-0 down to rock Liverpool.And although Salah’s winner sent them home empty-handed, Haaland’s classy contribution — he is just the fourth player to score four goals in his first two Champions League games — suggested they shouldn’t be underestimated for the rest of the European campaign.Gomez woes shake Liverpool’s foundationsLiverpool defender Joe Gomez suffered a difficult night against Salzburg © AFP / Ben STANSALLWith Liverpool defender Joel Matip sidelined due to injury, Joe Gomez endured a troubled night as his replacement at the heart of Liverpool’s defence.Matip was sidelined due to a “slight knock” sustained in Saturday’s Premier League win at Sheffield United and the Cameroon international was badly missed.Gomez partnered Virgil van Dijk at centre-back, but never looked comfortable in just his fifth start of the season as Salzburg ran the Liverpool defence ragged time and again.The 22-year-old’s creaky performance will concern Jurgen Klopp, who must hope Matip recovers quickly with games against Leicester, Manchester United, Tottenham and Arsenal coming later in October.0Shares0000(Visited 19 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more