Joe Lycett shreds £10,000 as David Beckham refuses to end his World Cup ambassadorship with anti-LGBTQ+ Qatar

Catherine Muxworthy November 20, 2022

At 12pm on Sunday November 20, the day that the FIFA World Cup was due to kick off in Qatar, Joe Lycett shredded David Beckham’s reputation as an LGBTQ+ ally alongside £10,000 of his own money live on, dressed in a ruffled, rainbow outfit. The comedian makes no comment in the video, but simply curtsies and steps out of shot.

A week before the World Cup was due to kick off in Qatar, comedian Joe Lycett issued an ultimatum to David Beckham, asking him to pull out of his reported £10 million contract with Qatar, or donate his fee as an ambassador, due to the country’s poor human rights record including the treatment and persecution of LGBTQ+ citizens. If Beckham ignored this plea, then Lycett threatened to shred £10,000 of his own money, instead of donating it to charity.

David Beckham has stayed quiet on the matter, going ahead with a speech at the ‘Generation Amazing’ youth festival in Doha, in which he said: “Dream can come true. That is why you are here. You share Generation Amazing’s twin passions for the game of football and for making the world a more tolerant and inclusive place,” seemingly ignoring Qatar’s record regarding migrant labour, human rights, and anti-LGBTQ+ laws.

When Lycett shared the video of himself shredding the money on Twitter, he simply captioned it with “A platform for progress”, a line which featured in David Beckham’s speech in Qatar.

While many people online seemed to miss the point of this stunt – suggesting that it was a waste of money – others commended him for making a powerful statement with some even suggesting that the now shredded money could be made into a piece of art by an artist like Nathan Wyburn – who is known for creating collages from unusual medium – and sold at auction for charity instead.

Joe Lycett has yet to make any statement regarding the result of this stunt; however, it is David Beckham’s silence when questioned about his relationship with the anti-LGBTQ+ country of Qatar that is truly deafening.