Wednesday 26 October 2016

Protests at Qatar draw

Opposition to Sepp Blatter's FIFA presidency and the 2022 World Cup reared its head in the unlikely venue of Gresty Road as Northern Ireland fans used their side's friendly with Qatar to make a stand.

The scene in Crewe might have lacked the drama of dawn raids in Zurich but the Green and White Army's repeated chants against Blatter and the Gulf state's status as tournament hosts suggested the football family has not yet moved on from the controversy.

The game was a low-key 1-1 draw featuring a maiden international goal for Stuart Dallas and a fine equaliser from Qatari substitute Karim Boudiaf. As a result Northern Ireland's embarrassing run in friendlies continued - they last won a non-competitive match against Georgia in 2008.

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