World

Top cleric joyful that Qatar beat US World Cup bid

Dec. 3: Qataris wave the national flag as they celebrate in Doha a day after the world football's governing body FIFA announced that the tiny Gulf state will host the 2022 World Cup.

Dec. 3: Qataris wave the national flag as they celebrate in Doha a day after the world football's governing body FIFA announced that the tiny Gulf state will host the 2022 World Cup.  (AP)

A prominent Islamic scholar says he is overjoyed that Qatar defeated the United States to host the 2022 World Cup.

Sheik Youssef al-Qaradawi told worshippers in Doha that he was "filled with joy" after soccer's governing body FIFA selected Qatar on Thursday over the U.S. and three other bidders.

Al-Qaradawi's Friday sermon was quoted in Qatar newspapers Saturday.

The cleric says Qatar humbled the United States, which he claims seeks to dominate every aspect of world affairs. Al-Qaradawi is considered a moderate and co-founded the popular IslamOnline website.

President Barack Obama said Qatar's selection was the "wrong decision."

But Arab leaders call it a groundbreaking move that will change perceptions of the Middle East.