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23 Mär 2021

Geoff Berkeley, Inside The Games

Growing number of clubs call on Norway to boycott FIFA World Cup in Qatar

Pressure is mounting on Norway to pull out of next year’s FIFA World Cup in Qatar, should they qualify, amid concerns over human rights and labour workers in the host country. Rosenborg BK became the latest top-flight Norwegian club to back calls for a boycott after 202 members voted in favour of the move, with just 46 against, at a meeting yesterday. The country’s most successful club joins fellow Eliteserien sides Tromsø, Odds Ballklub, Strømsgodset, Viking and Brann in declaring their support for a Norwegian boycott. Proposals are now expected to be submitted to the Norwegian Football Federation, who are due to hold to meet on March 14. A decision is unlikely to be made until the Federation stages its Annual General Meeting next year.

The Norwegian team are due to start their qualification campaign on March 24 with a trip to Gibraltar as they bid to reach the World Cup for the first time since 1998.

But calls are growing for them to withdraw from the competition after The Guardianreported that 6,500 workers had died in Qatar over the past 11 years.

Qatar was controversially awarded the 2022 FIFA World Cup in 2010 despite allegations of bribery and corruption in the bid process.

Tromsø were the first Norwegian club to call for a boycott, describing the number of deaths as "horrifying"