Paris has joined several French cities in announcing they will not show World Cup matches in public places or set up “fan zones” in protest at human rights and environmental abuses in Qatar. Other major towns in France have taken the same measures, Marseille, Lille, Bordeaux, Reims, Nancy, Rodez…
“This competition has gradually turned into a human and environmental disaster, incompatible with the values we want to see conveyed through sport and especially football,” Benoît Payan, the mayor of Marseille and head of a leftwing and environmentalist coalition, said in a statement.
In Paris, Pierre Rabadan, a former French rugby international and the deputy in charge of sport at city hall, said there was “no question” of installing fan zones.
“I will not watch a single match of this World Cup. This will cost me because since I was a kid it’s been an event that I love, that I look forward to and that I watch with passion. But let’s be honest with ourselves. This World Cup makes no sense. The only meaning of this event, as we all know, is money,” Said Eric Cantona, the former French international and Manchester United footballer.