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Qatar 2022 dismiss fresh bribe claims

Qatar 2022 World Cup consultant Mike Lee has dismissed accusations of bribery continually aimed at the winning bid.

Qatar 2022 World Cup consultant Mike Lee has dismissed accusations of bribery continually aimed at the winning bid.

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Numerous allegations of bribery and corruption have been
levelled since FIFA announced in December 2010 the Middle Eastern country would
host football’s biggest spectacle.

But Lee, who also worked on the London 2012 Olympics bid,
insists it was no different to any other he had worked on.

“There have never been any accusations that have
produced evidence about bribes being paid,” he said.

“I think the most recent coverage with France
Football told us that there was government to government conversations going
on, but in modern bidding that is normal.

“London 2012 won partly because of Tony Blair, Sochi
2014 won partly because of Vladimir Putin, Rio 2016 won partly because of
President Lula.

“I certainly think there was evidence that
governments were talking to governments but I don’t see how that’s different
from most of the winning bids in recent times.”

The London Games were hailed a success last year after
many doubted the city’s ability to host an Olympics.

The success of the Games proved doubters wrong, with fans
and athletes equally impressed at Britain’s hospitality.

Attention has turned to the legacy the Games will have on
London’s future, but Lee said it was too soon to tell.

“In some ways you can’t judge the legacy of an
Olympic games until 10 or 15 years after it has happened,” he said.

“It would be wrong to rush into judgements.

“I think they are things that have clearly been
delivered in terms of the venues, regeneration of the east end of London and
certainly in terms of elite sport we have had more success as a result of
London 2012.”

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Thu 28 February, 2013
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