Katie McCabe has said she would not have travelled to Qatar for the World Cup finals that start this month.
"No I wouldn't have went" McCabe said also stating "What is going on there isn't great. It's not a good look for football, but the decision has been made. The World Cup will continue, and hopefully, there won't be any bad news stories around it and it will just be football played, and that will be it. For me, I won't be watching it. Ireland aren't in it and I will be busy playing Champions League and WSL games."
McCabe, who is in a relationship with Irish team-mate Ruesha Littlejohn, called on players from competing nations to "take a stand" adding "The World Cup is a world stage. Obviously, Harry Kane wearing the rainbow captain's armband will be massive and I think it will raise visibility over the key issues in Qatar right now and I hope other nations do that and take a stand while playing the games."
At this moment, Australia and Denmark are the competing nations to make the strongest statements on human rights and LGBTQ issues in Qatar. Many people will be battling with their moral compass ahead of the tournament as the nation has a horrendous human rights record with thousands of migrant deaths recorded in the building of stadiums and a complete prohibition on homosexuality with severe consequences if disobeyed. Another critique is that the World Cup being held there is only fuelling Qatar's 'sportswashing' agenda.
McCabe's Arsenal team-mates have also been vocal in their criticism of the tournament in recent days. England's Euro 2022 hero Beth Mead told BBC Radio 4 that she will not be "backing or promoting" the World Cup in Qatar. Team-mate Lotte Wubben-Moy told the Guardian that she also made the "tough" decision not to watch.
That’s Beth Mead, Lotte Wubben-Moy and Katie McCabe from Arsenal who have all confirmed they won’t be watching the World Cup in Qatar 👇🏻 pic.twitter.com/XwN0mlAnmH
— Kathleen McNamee (@kathleen_mcn) November 8, 2022
McCabe is currently in Spain with the Irish squad preparing for a friendly against Morocco as part of their preparation for the World Cup next year in Australia/New Zealand.
"It's exciting. Obviously, we've not seen each other since the result in Glasgow that night. Everyone went straight back into club football. It's exciting to have everyone back. It's exciting to have some matches as well to prepare.
"Obviously, for us right now, it's all about preparation. Yes, of course, we're going to a World Cup, but the hard work starts now. We're all really excited to get going. There's a few new faces now in camp as well, which is exciting. We're ready to get to work," McCabe said as the squad reunite following their historic World Cup Qualifier win in Hampden Park.