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‘It’s not right to go’: Rod Stewart turned down more than $1m to play in Qatar

Rocker said he was asked to perform in the country 15 months ago

Ellie Harrison
Monday 14 November 2022 06:01 GMT
World Cup: Key things to know ahead of Qatar 2022

Rod Stewart has revealed he turned down more than $1m (approximately £845,000) to play in Qatar.

The musician was discussing the forthcoming World Cup when he explained that he’d actually been asked to play a show in the country in 2021.

“I was actually offered a lot of money, over $1m, to play there 15 months ago,” Stewart, 77, told The Sunday Times. “I turned it down. It’s not right to go. And the Iranians should be out too for supplying arms.”

The rocker’s comments come as comedian Joe Lycett told David Beckham he would shred £10,000 if the sportsman didn’t pull out of his Qatar World Cup deal. He is reportedly being paid £10m to be an ambassador.

Beckham has been heavily criticised for accepting the money from a country where homosexuality is illegal, given that he has previously been viewed as a great ally of the LGBTQ+ community.

Many fans are worried about attending the approaching tournament, which begins on 20 November, with some fearing for their safety when in Doha.

When it was announced that Robbie Williams plans to play in Qatar this December, there was furious backlash.

TV presenter Paul O’Grady was among the critics. He said: “I’m surprised at Robbie... No amount of money would get me there.”

Rod Stewart (Getty Images)

Earlier this month, Ian Hislop was praised for his “bang on” comments about the World Cup to Gary Neville, who is commentating at the tournament, on Have I Got News For You.

The Fifa World Cup is taking place in Qatar between 20 November and 18 December. Read more on the controversies surrounding the country as the tournament’s host here.

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