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Football fixtures. Handover time for Blatter and Putin. Alexey Nikolsky/EPA/Ria Novosti/Kremllin Pool

FIFA sheds sponsors as it heads into a dangerous decade

The news that three major sponsors have ceased their partnership with FIFA could potentially damage its reputation, and more importantly, its finances. Reports on Friday revealed that Castrol, Continental…
The sands of time will turn against the desert oil states. iceink

Oil prices: eventually the Gulf states will run out of power

Oil prices have now almost halved in six months to below $60/barrel thanks to OPEC’s refusal to cut production. This means all the member countries are revising their government spending policies. While…
Qatar and Russia have been cleared of corruption in their successful World Cup bids. EPA/Walter Bieri

Promises, promises – but FIFA just can’t admit it has a problem

FIFA appears to have cleared Russia and Qatar of any wrongdoing in their successful bids to host the 2018 and 2022 world cups. Its report recognises that mistakes were made but downplays the level of improper…
Troops conduct an anti-terrorist drill in front of a banner of one of the Saudi royal family. Despite the kingdom’s role in fostering extremism, the US sees Saudi Arabia as an ally against Islamic State. EPA/Saudi Press Agency

Anti-terrorism plan must tackle ‘allies’ who also fuel radicalism

As Australia prepares to join combat operations, the coalition of nations stitched together by the US in response to the developing threat of Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS or ISIL) is overlooking the…
FIFA, led by president Sepp Blatter, is under fire once more for its decision to award hosting rights for the 2022 World Cup to the Gulf nation of Qatar. EPA/Atef Safadi

Qatar saga shows why FIFA should return football to the fans

Qatar did not win the right to host football’s World Cup in 2022 legitimately. That was impossible. Awarding the World Cup to Qatar was clearly not about passion for the game, nor about offering communities…

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