Qatar hosting the 2022 World Cup and FIFA’s ban on One Love armbands were big mistakes, a new poll by research experts Omnisis has revealed.
59% of respondents agreed that Qatar was an inappropriate choice to host the world’s biggest football festival, with 18% saying it was a good choice, according to the new poll.
Meanwhile, 57% of people said FIFA’s decision to ban the “One Love” rainbow armband was the wrong move, while 23% supported the decision.
The misgivings about Qatar as a host nation may also hit TV audiences, with 38% of people saying they are less likely to watch the matches - while 30% disagreed and said it would not put them off.
Despite the negativity surrounding the competition, there is optimism about England’s chances with 26% saying Gareth Southgate’s team are their favourites to win the World Cup.
Brazil are second favourites with 17% followed by reigning champions France on 8%. Lionel Messi’s Argentina have 7%, with Spain on 3% and Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal on 2%.
Brian Cooper, Managing Director of Omnisis, said: “The results are interesting as we enter the knockout stages of the World Cup. Despite the feel-good atmosphere around England and their performances, there is still a high degree of dissatisfaction with Qatar being made hosts of the competition due to their human rights record.
“What was especially interesting was to see how many people said they wouldn’t follow the tournament on TV because of their principled stance.
“As the saying goes, don't count your chickens until they're hatched, but after a runners-up spot at Euro 2020 last year, 26% think England could go one step further and become World Champions for the first time in 56 years.”
After topping their group and beating Senegal 3-0 in the Second Round, England will now face France in the Quarter Finals of the World Cup on Saturday, 10th December 2022.
The poll was carried out by Omnisis on 1st-2nd December (before England’s victory over Senegal). The poll quizzed 1,189 people and is weighted to a nationally representative population.
The full data can be found here: https://www.omnisis.co.uk/poll-results/vi-12-results-02-12-2022/