After the game was abandoned due to alleged racist insults in the friendly against New Zealand against Qatar, the Qatar Football Association has now commented.
In the statement via Twitter, Qatar’s federation confirmed that international player Yusuf Abdurisag had an exchange of words with an opponent just before the break “in the heat of the moment”. However, Abdurisag emphasized that he had not used any racist or discriminatory language or directed it at an opponent. On the contrary, it was said that Abdurisag emphasized that he had been racially abused during the game.
The “All Whites” stayed in the dressing room for the second half of the game in Ritzing, Austria, on Monday evening. “We fully support the action taken by our players, who have collectively agreed on this course of action,” said New Zealand Football Association boss Andrew Pragnell on Tuesday. “We never want a game to be abandoned, but some issues go beyond football and it’s important to take a stand,” he said.
No camera footage of the incident
What happened? Central defender Michael Boxall is said to have been racially abused by a Qatari player towards the end of the first half, according to the association. Although teammates reported the incident to the referee, he took no action, it said. Boxall (34) plays for FC United Minnesota in the American Major League Soccer. What exactly was said was still unclear. There was also no camera footage of the incident.
The Austrian referee Manuel Schüttengruber stated that he had not noticed the alleged insult and that it was not an issue on the pitch. Only during the break was he informed by the New Zealanders that they no longer wanted to enter. “I was then surprised. I was then informed that there had been a racist insult,” said Schüttengruber to ORF. He wrote a report that will now be forwarded to FIFA.
Qatar coach Queiroz: FIFA to investigate incident
The association of the former World Cup host Qatar had initially only commented on the withdrawal of the “All Whites” in a tweet before the further statement followed and the association boss Abdurisag also assured full support.
Qatari media quoted national coach Carlos Queiroz as saying he was surprised by the opponent’s decision. “The referee didn’t see the exchange, nobody on the bench and neither did the coaches,” he said. “It was just a dispute between two players.” He hopes that FIFA will investigate the incident.
The U21 match between Ireland and Kuwait was also broken off
A U21 international match between teams from Ireland and Kuwait was also canceled on Monday. As the Irish association announced via Twitter, a substitute player had been racially insulted by a player from Kuwait. The incident was reported to the associations FIFA and UEFA, the Irish said.
The Kuwait Football Association responded to the Irish association’s allegations in a statement on Twitter. The reports of racist insults during the game in Bad Radkersburg, Austria, are “false and are categorically rejected”. The Kuwaiti footballers are characterized by “discipline, good manners and exemplary behavior”: “None of them are allowed to behave improperly towards others.