Pubs refuse to show World Cup matches in protest of Qatar’s LGBTQ rights record

pub throughout England refuse to show the world cup 2022 on television in protest of Qatar’s record on LGBTQ and other human rights.

The managers have said that they are boycotting the tournament due to the decision to host the tournament in Qatar. where homosexuality is illegal and can be punished by death.

The World Cup falls during part of the Christmas period, traditionally the busiest pub trade of the year, while places have generally filled up during England matches in previous tournaments.

During the Euro 2020 tournament final, the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA) estimated that almost 13 million pints would be sold. That total would be closer to 17 million were it not for Covid-19 restrictions, which meant venues could only accept 50 to 60 percent of normal capacity.

But the prospect of losing revenue has not stopped managers from opposing the decision to host the tournament in Qatar and ban soccer from the screens at its venues.

It comes after England fans from the LGBTQ community said Yo they would not travel to Qatar for fear of their safety.

Owner Nicola Moxham, 43, who runs the Mustard Pot pub in Leeds, West Yorkshire, said she had decided to stop showing World Cup matches after customers objected, with refunds given to dozens of people who they had bought tickets.

Nicola Moxham, owner of Mustard Pot, says customers raised concerns about Qatar's record on homophobia and human rights (Photo: Supplied)
Nicola Moxham, owner of Mustard Pot, says customers raised concerns about Qatar’s record on homophobia and human rights (Photo: Supplied)

She said Yo: “When we put it out on social media, maybe a week or two ago, we started getting feedback from our regular customers saying, ‘That’s pretty annoying, that makes me uncomfortable.’

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“It wasn’t anything like attacking us, more along the lines of, ‘It’s really disappointing that you chose to do that, it makes me feel uncomfortable.’ It was like we were letting people down.

“People raised all the obvious reasons: human rights abuses, homophobia.”

Since announcing on Monday that they would be canceling World Cup bookings and no longer broadcasting the matches in the pub, he said he had received many messages of support.

“People are really happy that we’re not and they decide to come here and book dinner instead of seeing it,” he said.

The World Cup comes in a Tough times for the pub industry as cost of living crisis coincides with miserable winter weather.

Two-thirds of the 300 bar-goers surveyed by KAM and Heineken said they would monitor their spending more carefully during the World Cup this winter due to cost of living concernsthe financial times reported last week.

He also cited pub chains who expected drink-focused pubs to do well, while food-focused gastropubs would suffer with people who would normally eat out and choose to stay home to avoid the football fans.

Other industry analysts have pointed out that a clash with the holiday season could be a hindrance, not a help, for establishments that show the games. It means competition for space inside pubs is at its height, with cooler weather meaning pub gardens cannot be used as viewing spots, unlike in the summer World Cups.

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Qatar World Cup organizers have said they are committed to an “inclusive and discrimination-free” World Cup, but other venues have taken a similar position to Mustard Pot.

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Several pubs in Chester are among those who have also decided not to show the games, with a message on The Liverpool Arms pub’s Facebook page saying: “After lengthy soul-searching, The Liverpool Arms have decided they will not broadcast no The FIFA World match. 2022 Cup hosted by Qatar.

“As a Chester LGBTQ+ bar, we are deeply concerned about the lack of LGBTQ+ rights in the host nation, which is well documented.

“We will not promote this event. However, we wish England and Wales much success in the tournament.”

Two other pubs in the city, Victoria and Commercial Hotel and Bar, said they are “boycotting the World Cup due to Qatar’s anti-LGBTQ+ laws etc”, adding that “we will never support any country or associate with such prejudices and ideas”. .

Leeds venue The Key Club posted that it was canceling its decision to show England matches, which they had planned to broadcast live to punters.

In a statement, they said: “We wanted to create a safe space where people would feel comfortable watching football.

“However, after careful deliberation and further investigation, we now understand that it is best to cancel upcoming events in response to the ongoing LGBTQ+ issues surrounding the host nation.”

The pub said they would collect donations for LGBTQ+ charities at upcoming events.

The Victoria Inn in Colchester, Essex, is another pub that has said it will not show football for the next few weeks. In a post on social media, the pub said: “We don’t show sports here and that won’t change.

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“Even if we did, we wouldn’t be showing the World Cup because of where it takes place and the way they treat other human beings.”

The Mustard Pot in Chapel Allerton, Leeds, is among the venues boycotting this year’s World Cup (Photo: Supplied)

John Sizzle, 54, co-owner of east London bar The Glory, said his bar had shown matches during the women’s Euro 2022 but had no plans to broadcast the Qatar tournament.

“Normally we don’t show football,” he said. Yo. “We showed a lot of women’s football, which was incredible. Our community was excited about it.

“Queer people, gay men and women don’t tend to be as concerned about UK football. The World Cup gets a little more exciting.

“But as you know, there are issues with regard to the politics of the host country and our audience, and our community, is very politically driven when it comes to dealing with human rights issues.”

He said it was definitely not that the pub would not show the matches, but that the decision could hinge on “talks about queer rights and human rights”.

“My personal opinion is that if you find that UK football and/or footballers or team representatives start to speak positively about queer rights, then maybe interest in it will increase,” he said.

“Otherwise, it’s another example of homophobia that exists within the sport that we’ve known forever.”