Respected U.S. soccer journalist Grant Wahl, who notably protested Qatar’s anti-LGBTQ+ laws at the World Cup, died suddenly on Friday.
The soccer world suffered an immense loss in Qatar with the sudden passing of journalist Grant Wahl.
Wahl was in Qatar covering the World Cup. He had been tweeting about the Netherlands and Argentina battling in the quarterfinals.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Wahl “collapsed in the media tribune at Friday’s Argentina-Netherlands World Cup game. Paramedics treated Wahl for approximately 30 minutes before removing him from the stadium on a stretcher. He was later pronounced dead Saturday morning at a Qatari hospital.”
His cause of death is currently unknown.
Soccer journalist Grant Wahl died suddenly at the World Cup in Qatar
Wahl had complained of illness during media appearances on Thursday. On a podcast, he spoke about having “bronchitis” and needing to go to the medical tent on multiple occasions. However, he also said he was feeling better after scaling back his activities.
Wahl made headlines when he was barred from entering a stadium in Qatar while wearing a shirt supporting the LGBTQ+ community. He has also been an outspoken critic of the government’s handling of the treatment of migrant workers during the World Cup preparation process.
The last article he published while at the World Cup highlighted those failures.
His brother, who is gay, released a heartwrenching video after news of Wahl’s death emerged. He said Wahl had received death threats, that he was healthy, and that the family is suspicious of foul play.
The soccer community mourned Grant Wahl’s passing on Twitter
The U.S. soccer community was stunned, saddened and suspicious:
Wahl was 48 years old. He contributed cornerstone content for U.S. sports journalism, including the famed “Chosen One” feature on a young LeBron James. He was the leading voice of U.S. soccer coverage. He will be missed.