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AFC chief hopes doubts over Qatar bid for 2022 World Cup will be cleared up soon

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KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia - The head of the Asian Football Confederation has expressed "grave concerns" over fresh allegations of corruption involving Qatar's winning bid for the 2022 World Cup but says he's hopeful the doubts will be cleared up soon.

AFC President Sheik Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa of Bahrain says in a statement Monday that hosting the World Cup "means a lot to the continent" and he is still looking forward to a successful World Cup in Qatar.

He was responding to an investigation by Britain's Sunday Times newspaper alleging that former Qatari FIFA official Mohamed bin Hammam made payments totalling $5 million to build support for his country's World Cup bid.

Sheik Salman said he is convinced that Qatar's World Cup organizing body "will do their utmost to clear the doubts."

Qatar's organizing committee has denied any wrongdoing.

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