The Qatari government has provided further details on Death of American sportswriter Grant Wahlpromising to repatriate the body “in accordance with the wishes of the family.”
“We are deeply saddened by the death of American journalist Grant Wahl,” a spokesman for the Supreme Committee of Qatar for Delivery & Legacy said in a statement. “Grant was known for his enormous love of football and was in Qatar to cover their eighth FIFA World Cup.”
“He fell ill in the press box at Lusail Stadium during last night’s quarter-final match between Argentina and the Netherlands,” the statement added. “He received immediate emergency medical treatment at the scene, which continued while he was transferred by ambulance to Hamad General Hospital.”
The committee offered its “deepest condolences” to Wahl’s family, friends and colleagues, adding that it is “in contact with the US embassy and relevant local authorities” to ensure Wahl’s body is repatriated “in accordance with the wishes of the family.
Wahl, 48, passed away Friday night. His death shocked his family and colleagues as he appeared to be in good health. Fellow journalist Rafael Cores, who sat next to Wahl during the game, said Wahl was working on his laptop and had been “laughing at a joke we saw on Twitter” minutes before collapsing.
Paramedics performed CPR for several minutes at the scene before sending him to the hospital.
Wahl’s brother, Eric, announced the death on Twitter, asking for help as he dealt with the news. Eric Wahl pointed out that Qatari authorities had arrested Grant Wahl for wearing a rainbow shirt two weeks earlier when he tried to attend the game between the United States and Wales.
“I’m gay. I’m the reason he wore the rainbow jersey at the World Cup,” said Eric Wahl. “My brother was healthy. He told me he received death threats. I don’t think my brother just died. I think that they killed him. And I’m just asking for any help.”
Grant Wahl had written a final post in his Substack newsletter, “Football”, in which he criticized the Qatari government for its treatment of migrant workerssaying, “They just don’t care.”
Wahl said Thursday that he had been feeling unwell all week and said he had bronchitis. He described his body “rebelling against me,” leading him to visit the medical clinic twice, including on Thursday.
“I basically canceled everything I had this Thursday and took a nap, and I’m a little better,” he said. “You can probably tell in my voice that I’m not 100% here.”
US Soccer issued a statement saying that the “entire US Soccer family is heartbroken.”
Wahl began his journalism career as an intern for the miami herald and worked at Sports Illustrated from 1996 to 2020. Last year, Wahl launched its “Football” newsletter. He also worked for FOX Sports and CBS Sports during his career.
“So grateful for the support of my husband’s soccer family @GrantWahl and so many friends who reached out tonight,” Wahl’s wife, Dr. Céline Gounder, tweeted. “I’m in complete shock.”
Fox News’ Joseph A. Wulfsohn contributed to this report.