Soccer writer Grant Wahl dies at World Cup match in Qatar

Grant Wahl7

Grant Wahl, one of the most well-known soccer writers in the United States, died early Saturday while covering the World Cup match between Argentina and the Netherlands. He was 48.

U.S. media seated near him said Wahl fell back in his seat in a section of Lusail Iconic Stadium reserved for journalists during extra time of the game, and reporters adjacent to him called for assistance. Emergency services workers responded very quickly, the reporters said, and the reporters later were told that Wahl had died.

“He received immediate emergency medical treatment on site, which continued as he was transferred by ambulance to Hamad General Hospital,” the World Cup organizing committee said in a statement, which did not list a cause of death. “We are in touch with the US Embassy and relevant local authorities to ensure the process of repatriating the body is in accordance with the family’s wishes.”

Wahl had been critical of FIFA and Qatar during the tournament. In an interview with NPR, Eric Wahl said his brother didn’t shy away from highlighting the controversy at the World Cup “He was very critical of FIFA – which is not new for him and very critical how the Qataris were running the games.”

Eric Wahl said his brother had received death threats while in Qatar because of the rainbow shirt and his continued reporting on FIFA and the Qatari government.

U.S. Soccer noted Wahl’s death in a tweet, saying the organization was heartbroken. “Grant’s passion for soccer and commitment to elevating its profile across our sporting landscape played a major role in helping to drive interest in and respect for our beautiful game.”

AP and NPR

Who will be Trump' running mate?