What Next for Qatar’s World Cup in 2022?

by Kristian Coates Ulrichsen As soccer’s governing body gathers in Miami on March 14-15, the vexed question of whether to bring forward the expansion of the FIFA World Cup, currently scheduled for the 2026 tournament in North America, to Qatar… Continue Reading  

Qatar’s Thrashing of UAE Is a Little Taste of Justice

by James Brownsell So much of this Gulf Crisis has been so petty, so childish, so frivolous. Like little boys squabbling over toys, Saudi Arabia and the UAE have been picking on their little brother Qatar for having an independent… Continue Reading  

It’s Raining Iranian Men, Hallelujah

by Shervin Malekzadeh The World Cup ended for the Iranian national team last week but not before the rest of the world took note of its physical prowess off the field. Images of the team went viral after a suggestive… Continue Reading  

Saudi Arabia Versus Iran on the Football Pitch

by James M. Dorsey Saudi Arabia’s bitter rivalry with Iran has spilled onto Asian soccer pitches with the newly created South West Asian Football Federation (SWAFF) reflecting the kingdom’s bid for regional hegemony, including domination of soccer. Saudi Arabia’s most recent victory… Continue Reading  

The Rise, Fall, and Rise Again of the Politics of Middle Eastern Soccer

by James M. Dorsey Edited remarks at The Beautiful Game? Identity, Resentment, and Discrimination in Football and Fan Cultures conference, Center for Research on Antisemitism, Berlin, 12-13 April 2018 The virtually continuous role of soccer as a key player in… Continue Reading