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Second Journalist Dies Suddenly While Covering the World Cup

A second journalist died suddenly while covering the ongoing 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar over the weekend.

Al Kass TV photojournalist Khalid al-Misslam, of Qatar, was reported to have died on Saturday (December 10), according to the Gulf Times.

"Al- Misslam, a Qatari, died suddenly while covering the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022," the Gulf Times wrote. "We believe in Allah's mercy and forgiveness for him, and send our deepest condolences to his family.

"We are all Allah's and to Him we return."

News of al-Misslam's death came hours after American sports journalist Grant Wahl was reported to have died while covering the World Cup on Friday (December 9).

Wahl's agent, Tim Scanlan, told CBS News that the soccer analyst "appeared to have suffered some sort of acute distress in the press room" at the stadium during the quarterfinal match between Argentina and the Netherlands, which saw Argentina win in extra time on penalty kicks.

Paramedics were reportedly rushed to the scene but unable to revive Wahl, according to Scanlan.

Wahl was reported to have "received immediate medical treatment on site, which continued as he was transferred by ambulance to Hamad General Hospital," according to a statement from Qatari officials obtained by CBS News.

Wahl was live-tweeting during the match as part of his coverage for what was his eighth consecutive World Cup.

"The entire U.S. soccer family is heartbroken to learn that we have lost Grant Wahl," the U.S. Soccer Federation said in an official statement shared Friday night. "Fans of soccer and journalism of the highest quality knew we could always count on Grant to deliver insightful and entertaining stories about our game, and its major protagonists."

Wahl's official cause of death has not yet been determined.

The veteran sports journalist mentioned that he'd contracted bronchitis during the ongoing World Cup in the latest episode of his Fútbol with Grant Wahl podcast.

"I took some time off here myself," Wahl said. "We had two days off here without games. Seventeen straight days of games and my body, I think, told me, even when the U.S. went out, 'Dude, you are not sleeping enough,' and it rebelled on me. So I've had a case of bronchitis this week. I've been to the medical center at the clinic twice now, including today. I am feeling better today. I basically cancelled everything on this Thursday that I had, and I napped, and I am doing slightly better. You can probably tell by my voice that I am not doing 100% here."

Scanlan also mentioned that Wahl had faced an "aggressive schedule" while covering the World Cup in Qatar.

"I asked, 'Was it too much?' and he said no, this is what he lived for, and he loved the World Cup," Scanlan said via CBS News, referencing a conversation he had with Wahl on December 3,. "He had just been recognized for his eighth World Cup. He had turned 48 yesterday. He was a noted chef and loved to entertain. Twenty good friends that came to his apartment last night to celebrate."

Wahl's wife, CBS News medical expert Dr. Céline Gounder, MD, ScM, FIDA, publicly addressed the death of her husband, Grant Wahl, in a post shared on her verified Twitter account on Friday.

"I am so thankful for the support of my husband @GrantWahl's soccer family & of so many friends who've reached out tonight. I'm in complete shock," Gounder wrote in a quote-tweet of the United States Soccer Federation's official statement on Wahl's death.

Wahl was recently prohibited from entering the Qatar stadium for the United States-Wales match on November 21 for wearing a rainbow shirt to the game and said he was told by security that LGBTQ symbolism was not permitted.

“Just now: Security guard refusing to let me into the stadium for USA-Wales,” Wahl tweeted. “’You have to change your shirt. It’s not allowed.’"

Wahl's brother, Eric, who is gay and noted that his brother wore the pro-LGBTQ shirt for him, shared a video online implying that foul play was involved in his Grant's death.

“I’m the reason he wore the rainbow shirt to the World Cup,” Eric Wahl said with tears in a video re-shared by Jack Settleman. “My brother was healthy. He told me he received death threats. I do not believe my brother just died. I believe he was killed. And I just beg for any help.”