David Beckham has received an ultimatum from comedian Joe Lycett to withdraw his support for the World Cup in Qatar.
Lycett, whose comedy brand has incorporated activism in the past, such as legally changing his name to Hugo Boss and hosting a Pride event in his hometown, posted a video to his social media over the weekend criticizing the Beckham’s involvement in the 2022 World Cup.
The former England, Manchester United, Real Madrid and LA Galaxy midfielder has been a strong supporter of gay rights throughout his career, but agreed to serve as Qatar’s ambassador as part of of a deal that Lycett claims is worth £10m in his video. Others have inflated that figure to almost 15 times that number.
Message from Joe Lycett to David Beckham, about his involvement in the 2022 World Cup
“This is a message for David Beckham. I consider you and Kim Woodburn and Monty Don a gay icon,” Lycett told the camera in his video, sitting at a desk with £10,000 of his own money in front of him. .
“You are the first Premiership footballer to shoot with gay magazines like Attitude, to talk openly about your gay fans, and you married a Spice Girl, which is the most gay thing a human being can do. .
“But now it’s 2022. And you’ve signed a £10million deal with Qatar to be their ambassador during the FIFA World Cup. Qatar has been voted as one of the worst places in the world. world to be gay. Homosexuality is illegal, punishable by imprisonment and, if you are a Muslim, possibly even death.
“If you end your relationship with Qatar, I will donate this $10,000 of my own money, like a grand for every million you make, to charities that support gay football.
“However, if you don’t, next Sunday at noon I will be throwing that money in a paper shredder just before the opening ceremony of the World Cup and streaming it live on a website I recorded called benderslikebeckham.com (opens in a new tab).
“Not just the money, but also your status as a gay icon will be shredded. You will force me to commit a crime.”
Beckham has yet to comment on the video, as same-sex relationships are banned in Qatar.