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Soccer Star Calls for Boycott of Premier League LGBT Effort

  • Egypt’s Aboutrika says Muslims shouldn’t wear rainbow laces
  • Controversy comes before first-ever World Cup in Middle East
Mohamed Aboutrika

Mohamed Aboutrika

Photographer: Mohamed Hossam/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

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Qatar-based broadcaster BeIN Media Group found itself embroiled in controversy after one of its best-known commentators criticized the Premier League’s Rainbow Laces campaign in support of the LGBT community, potentially lighting a tinderbox in the run-up to next year’s World Cup.

With human rights groups already critical of staging the World Cup in Qatar, Mohamed Aboutrika, a retired Egyptian soccer star who appears regularly on BeIN, described homosexuality as an affront to the Muslim religion.