It has come as a great shock that Grant Wahl, an American sports journalist, has passed away while covering the FIFA world cup 2022. According to witnesses Grant “collapsed” while covering the Argentina – Netherlands match. He allegedly reported “feeling ill” and was given immediate medical treatment in the press area. A few minutes later, he was transferred to a hospital where he met his untimely death.
Grant Wahl, born on December 2, 1973, was an American sports journalist who worked at CBS, Sports Illustrated and Fox sports as a soccer analyst, writer and correspondent respectively. He had also written a book called “The Beckham Experiment” in 2009. Being a soccer enthusiast, he had covered 11 world cups — six men’s and five women’s — in his lifetime.
Grant was a widely loved journalist. His love for soccer and passion for journalism were unmatched. He also cared about human rights immensely and became a voice for people who didn’t have one. Moreover, Grant had always advocated for women and LGBTQIA+ rights. He believed in doing the right thing. People who knew him only had great things to say about him. He was the manifestation of a true journalist — one who inspired the up and coming generation.
The Qatar Situation
In one of his tweets, Grant revealed that he was denied entry into the world cup stadium because he was wearing a rainbow shirt in solidarity with the LGBTQIA+ community. He was detained for around 25 minutes before some authorities released him and issued their apologies. Grant went on to say that he was verbally abused by the security and his phone was snatched from his hand during this entire ordeal.
Circumstances surrounding Grant’s death
While the exact cause of Grant’s death remains unclear, his brother, Eric Wahl, believes that his death wasn’t accidental. In an instagram video, Eric said, “My name is Eric Wahl. I live in Seattle, Washington. I am Grant Wahl’s brother. I am gay.” He mentioned that Grant wore the rainbow shirt to support him but ended up receiving death threats because of it. He also stated that Grant was completely healthy.
Whether there was foul play involved in Grant Wahl’s death or not is unclear but in the case of it being true, Qatar and the FIFA authorities should be rightfully reprimanded. Not only did his death affect his family and friends, it also shook the entire journalism and soccer world.