This weekend's Sunday Times has made a series of explosive claims, which it says are based on a trove of information passed to it by a FIFA insider, about the "corrupt" influence of a Qatari former FIFA vice-president in the voting process that led to the 2022 World Cup being awarded to Qatar.
The Qatar bid committee has denied any knowledge of the payments alleged to have been made by Mohamed bin Hammam.
In a statement issued today it repeated that he had played "no official or unofficial role" in the committee. It said it was co-operating with an ongoing FIFA inquiry into the voting process and had "always upheld the highest standard of ethics and integrity".
It added: "We will take whatever steps are necessary to defend the integrity of Qatar's bid and our lawyers are looking into this matter. The right to host the tournament was won because it was the best bid and because it is time for the Middle East to host its first FIFA World Cup."
However, FIFA vice-president Jim Boyce has said in media interviews that he would support a fresh vote on who should host the 2022 tournament, if the allegations can be proven.
Fifa vice-president Jim Boyce "would have no problem" with a re-vote to find new host for World Cup in 2022 http://t.co/d1f7cFmhGM— BBC News (World) (@BBCWorld) June 1, 2014
Football Association chairman Greg Dyke told Channel 4 News today: "Some of this evidence on the face of it is quite compelling. If the evidence is there, that the process is corrupt, then obviously the process has to be looked at again."
Here's how the world of sport, politics and public relations is reacting to the story:
Anyone sticking it to FIFA?
I think FIFA need another vote. The best candidate for 2022, given 2018 is in Europe was, and still is, Australia.— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) June 1, 2014
Surely now, in light of emails showing wrongdoing, national legislatures should step in if the Qatar decision is not revisited by Fifa?— tom_watson (@tom_watson) June 1, 2014
Any different views?
ST's 11 extraordinary pages of Qatar WC allegations from a 'senior figure inside FIFA.' All you need to know: Blatter doesn't want Qatar.— sportingintelligence (@sportingintel) June 1, 2014
And those of a satirical bent say?
As revealed by Sunday Times: voting guidance form for FIFA delegates on whether to choose Qatar as World Cup hosts pic.twitter.com/SscN3uS7lU— David Schneider (@davidschneider) June 1, 2014