Soccer writer Grant Wahl dies at World Cup match in Qatar

LUSAIL, Qatar – American journalist Grant Wall, who helped popularize soccer in the United States and covered some of the sport’s biggest stories, died Saturday while covering the World Cup match between Argentina and the Netherlands. He was 48 years old.

American media who were sitting next to him said Wall collapsed back in his seat in the media stands at the Lusail Iconic Stadium during extra time and reporters nearby called for help. Emergency personnel responded quickly, reporters said, and later told reporters that Val had died.

Grant Wall was a devoted colleague and friend to many at FOX Sports

Grant Wall was a devoted colleague and friend to many at FOX Sports

Grant Wall was a devoted colleague and friend to many at FOX Sports. We are still shocked and saddened by his passing, and our deepest condolences go out to his wife, family, friends and colleagues.

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Val was covering his eighth World Cup. He posted on his website on Monday that he visited a medical clinic while in Qatar.

“My body finally broke me. That’s what three weeks of sleep deprivation, extreme stress and overwork can do to you,” Wahl wrote. “The cold I’ve had over the past 10 days turned into something more intense on the night of the USA-Netherlands game, and I felt my upper chest take on a new level of pressure and discomfort.”

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Val wrote that he had tested negative for COVID-19 and was trying to treat his symptoms.

“Today I went to the medical clinic in the main media center and they said I might have bronchitis. They gave me a course of antibiotics and some cough syrup. I got a little better after a few hours. Later. But still: No bueno ” wrote.

Wall wrote this week that he was among 82 journalists honored by FIFA and AIPS, the international sports press association, for covering eight or more World Cups.

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A 1996 graduate of Princeton, Wall worked for Sports Illustrated from 1996 to 2021, which is known primarily for its coverage of football and college basketball. Then he launched his own website.

Wall also worked for FOX Sports from 2012-19.

His wife, Dr. Celine Gounder, is a clinical associate professor at New York University School of Medicine, a physician at Bellevue Hospital Center, and a CBS News medical news contributor.

A statement from the Associated Press.

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