Cantona calls Beckham’s association with Qatar World Cup a ‘big, big mistake’

Manchester United legend Eric Cantona has slammed footballers like David Beckham for associating with the upcoming Qatar World Cup.

Golden Balls landed a massive seven-figure pay cheque to front an ad campaign for the first World Cup under the desert sun. Beckham will star in the adverts alongside NFL icon Peyton Manning for World Cup sponsors Doritos.

And Becks' former United team-mate Cantona has hit out at those who agreed to team up to show support for the World Cup in Qatar – saying they are making a "big, big mistake." The Frenchman also confirmed, when speaking to The Athletic, that he would have snubbed the role if he had been offered the chance.

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Discussing the roles like Beckham's, Cantona told The Athletic: “I would not do it at all. I do completely the opposite. In January 2022, I started to say that. Maybe I was the first one. But I am free to do it. And of course, an ex-player paid to do this kind of thing…”

He added: “It could be they don’t know what has happened there,” he counters. “Or, if they know it, I think they did wrong. I think they made a big mistake.

"A big, big mistake."

Do you agree with Eric Cantona? Let us know in the comments section

Beckham’s spokesperson defended the decision to star in the adverts: “David has been visiting Qatar regularly for over a decade. He’s always talked about the power of football as a force for good."

Qatar has been criticised for the country's highly restrictive laws on women’s rights as well as its stance on homosexuality – which is illegal and punishable by seven years in prison.

Cantona has maintained he will boycott the tournament and won't watch, although he doesn't believe players now should be expected to follow suit, given its the only chance of playing at the World Cup for some of them in their careers.

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