TOKYO: Another Japanese sports leader has had to apologise for speaking out of turn about event hosting issues.

After a couple of clips during Tokyo 2020’s successful Olympic bid campaign it has been the turn of the president of the country’s football association to withdraw comments about the hosting of the 2022 World Cup finals.

Japan – along with Australia, South Korea and the United States – lost out in the controversial FIFA executive vote to Qatar.

Earlier this week JFA leader Kuniya Daini was reported as saying: “If FIFA looks for an alternative country, we already have the stadiums that would meet the criteria to host it. We have the Olympics in 2020. If there is a chance, we’d like to do it, although I don’t know how likely that would be.”

Qatar’s hosting of the finals has come under heavy pressure because of the bid procedure itself followed by issues of temperature and workers’ welfare.

However Daini has now claimed that his comments were translated incorrectly.

In a letter to Qatar FA president Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Bin Ahmad Al Thani – and as reported by the UK Press Association – Daini said: “It is a fact and a decision by FIFA that [the] 2022 FIFA World Cup will be held in Qatar. We, Japan Football Association, fully support the hosting by Qatar with confidence that it will lead to further development of football in Asia.

“You will have our full support for the success of the biggest event in football.”

He added: “The article… was not based on the facts or actual remarks I made during the interview. At the same time I wish to sincerely apologise for any inconvenience or misunderstanding this may have caused to you and all the other concerned parties.”

Japan co-hosted the 2002 World Cup finals in tandem with South Korea.