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US soccer journalist Grant Wahl dies while covering Netherlands vs Argentina World Cup quarter-final

10:53 EAT 10/12/2022
Grant Wahl
American sportswriter Grant Wahl has died while covering the quarter-final between the Netherlands and Argentina at the World Cup in Qatar.

The 48-year-old was in attendance at the Lusail Stadium for the quarter-final on Saturday night. Various reports state he had a medical emergency during extra-time in the match and required CPR.

His agent, Tim Scanlan, told Reuters Wahl had suffered some kind of 'acute distress', but the exact reason for his death is as yet unclear.

In a statement, US Soccer said: "The entire US soccer family is heartbroken to learn that we have lost Grant Wahl.

"Fans of soccer and journalism of the highest quality knew we could always count on Grant to deliver insightful and entertaining stories about our game and its major protagonists: teams, players, coaches and the many personalities that make soccer unlike any sport.

"Here in the United States, Grant's passion for soccer and commitment to elevating its profile across our sporting landscape played a major role in helping to drive interest in, and respect for, our beautiful game.

"As important, Grant's belief in the power of the game to advance human rights was, and will remain, an inspiration to all.

"Grant made soccer his life's work, and we are devastated that he and his brilliant writing will no longer be with us."

Writing on Twitter, Wahl's wife Dr Celine Gounder said: "I am so thankful for the support of my husband Grant Wahl's soccer family & of so many friends who've reached out tonight. I'm in complete shock."

A statement from FIFA president Gianni Infantino read: "It is with disbelief and immense sadness that I have been made aware of the passing of renowned sports journalist Grant Wahl, while reporting on a quarter-final match during the FIFA World Cup in Qatar.

"His love for football was immense and his reporting will be missed by all who follow the global game.

"On behalf of FIFA and the football community, we express our sincerest condolences to his wife Celine, his family, and his friends at this most difficult time."

Wahl had covered eight World Cups across the men's and women's game, and had previously run for the FIFA presidency in 2011. He was also known as an author, having written the book 'The Beckham Experiment', about David Beckham's arrival in MLS in 2007.