England is expected to be criticised by a FIFA investigation into the World Cup bidding race, but it is understood investigators have not found evidence of wrongdoing that threatens Qatar staging the 2022 tournament.
FIFA will publish a 42-page summary of a two-year investigation into the controversial bidding process on Thursday morning.
Sky News understands that investigators will criticise several of the bidding nations for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments, including Qatar, England, Australia and Russia.
Crucially for Qatar’s chances of staging the 2022 tournament however, the report does not conclude there were guilty of grave breaches of FIFA’s bidding rules.
The conduct of the Qatar bid, which was backed by a huge budget that far exceeded all its opponents, is likely to be criticised, but in the words of one source with knowledge of the investigation “there is no smoking gun”.
Qatar has been under intense scrutiny ever since it won the vote to host the tournament in December 2010, facing a string of corruption allegations including claims, consistently denied, that it offered bribes and other financial inducements to members of FIFA’s executive committee… see more