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Eric Cantona cited the “horrible” treatment of migrant workers as the main reason why he will not watch the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
The Middle Eastern country’s hosting off the tournament has been the source of frequent controversy ever since they were awarded the competition in 2010.
Allegations of corruption and the maltreatment of migrant workers has been at the centre of frequent protests of the tournament.
A report from the Guardian claimed more than 6,500 migrant workers, believed to be of Indian, Pakistani, Nepalese, Bangladeshi, and Sri Lankan descent, died while constructing the stadiums – this figure is only believed to be a conservative figure, with the real number of fatalities believed to be much higher.
And Manchester United legend stated he does not “really care about the next World Cup” for this very reason.
“To be honest, I don't really care about the next World Cup, which is not a real World Cup for me,” Cantona said to the Daily Mail.
“In the last decades, you had a lot of events like the Olympic Games or World Cups in countries that are emerging – like in Russia or China.
“But Qatar – it's not the country of football. I'm not against the idea of hosting a World Cup in a country where there is a possibility to develop and promote football, like in South Africa or the United States in the 90's.
“But in Qatar, the truth is that there is no such potential. There is nothing. It's only about money I think.
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“It's only about money and the way they treated the people who built the stadiums, it's horrible. Thousands of people died, and yet we will celebrate this World Cup.”
Cantona also stated he will not watch or participate in the tournament when it kicks off in November.
“Personally, I will not watch it. I understand football is a business. “But I thought it was the only place where everybody could have a chance,” Cantona added.
'So it's why, maybe, if meritocracy and potential is the essence of football, it's even more surprising that we can organize a World Cup in Qatar, and people actually voted for that.”
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