US sports journalist Grant Wahl passes away while covering the World Cup in Qatar

US sports journalist Grant Wahl passes away while covering the World Cup in Qatar

A well-known American football journalist was died while covering the World Cup in Qatar.

Award Wahl, 48, fell as additional time started in the Argentina-Netherlands game on Friday night.

He may have had a heart attack, according to early reports, but this has not yet been officially confirmed.

Last month Mr Wahl was momentarily kept by Qatari experts for attempting to enter an arena wearing a rainbow shirt, on the side of LGBT privileges.

In a statement, the US Soccer League said it was “heartbroken” by the information.

According to the statement, “Fans of soccer and journalism of the highest quality knew we could always count on Grant to deliver insightful and entertaining stories about our game, and its major protagonists.”

Céline Gounder, Mr. Wahl’s wife, wrote that she was “complete shock” and was “so thankful” for the support she had received from friends in a tweet.

A day before he collapsed, Mr. Wahl celebrated his 48th birthday with friends in Qatar. On Monday, he said on his website that he had been sick for ten days and was taking antibiotics for what he thought was bronchitis.

He wrote, “My body finally broke down on me.” On the night of the USA-Netherlands game, what had been a cold for the previous ten days turned into something more severe, and I could feel my upper chest taking on a new level of pressure and discomfort.

“I didn’t have Covid (I test regularly here), but I went into the medical clinic and the main media center today, and they said I probably have bronchitis.”

Gianni Infantino, president of FIFA, said that Mr. Wahl had an “immense” passion for football and that his reporting would be “missed by all who follow the global game.”

Numerous UK journalists have paid tribute. Mr. Wahl was called a “brilliant journalist” by Piers Morgan, and Henry Winter of the Times called him a “fine man” and a “giant of the press box.”

Dan Roan of BBC Sport posted on Twitter: “Grant Wahl was a renowned and hugely respected journalist and the flood of tributes is testament to the esteem in which he was held.”

Don Garber, commissioner of Major League Soccer, posted this tweet: We are shocked, heartbroken, and saddened by Grant Wahl’s tragic passing. He was a kind and caring person who had an inexhaustible enthusiasm for soccer and dedication to journalism.”

Billie Jean King, a well-known tennis player in the United States, also paid tribute to Mr. Wahl, describing him as “advocate for the LGBTQ community and a prominent voice for women’s soccer.”

The following was stated by a spokesperson for the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy, the Qatari body in charge of World Cup planning: We are profoundly disheartened by the passing of the US columnist Award Wahl.

“Grant was in Qatar to cover his eighth Fifa World Cup and was well-known for his enormous passion for football.

“He became sick in the Lusail Arena media tribune, during the previous evening’s quarter-last match between Argentina v Netherlands. He was transported by ambulance to Hamad General Hospital, where he continued receiving immediate emergency medical care on the spot.

“To ensure that the repatriation of the body is in accordance with the family’s wishes, we are in contact with the US Embassy and relevant local authorities.”

Mr. Wahl received an award earlier this week for reporting on eight consecutive World Cups, the first of which was in the United States in 1994.

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