US sports journalist who was detained for campaigning for LGBTQI Rights DIES in Qatar during game


    A prominent football journalist from the United States has died while covering the World Cup in Qatar.

    Grant Wahl, 48, collapsed as extra time began in the Argentina-Netherlands game on Friday night.

    Early reports suggest he may have had a heart attack, but this has yet to be officially confirmed.

    Last month Mr Wahl was briefly detained by Qatari authorities for trying to enter a stadium wearing a rainbow shirt, in support of LGBT rights.

    In a statement, the US Soccer Federation said it was “heartbroken” by the news.

    “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,” it said.

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

    FIFA President Gianni Infantino said Mr Wahl’s love for football was “immense”, adding that his reporting would be “missed by all who follow the global game”.

    Tributes have poured in from several UK journalists. Piers Morgan described Mr Wahl as a “brilliant journalist”, while the Times’ Henry Winter said he was a “fine man” and “giant of the press box”.

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