World Cup 2022 news, Fans, teams arrive in buzzing Qatar

It’s almost here! World Cup 2022 is just two days away, with players and fans arriving in the Gulf country ahead of the historic event.
Workers putting finishing touches on fan zones and attractions across the country.

After slow start, Doha action picking up
Queues are building outside metro stations in Doha as football fans, tournament volunteers and labour workers enjoying their day off head towards the city’s centre.

The sun is still out but a strong breeze helps cool off the heat.

Expect it to be buzzing by sunset when fans will be back marching to drum beats and dancing to “Hayya, Hayya”, the World Cup anthem.

FIFA confirms beer will not be sold at stadiums
FIFA has confirmed that alcoholic beer will not be sold at World Cup stadiums, saying the decision followed “discussions between host country authorities and FIFA”.

“…a decision has been made to focus the sale of alcoholic beverages on the FIFA Fan Festival, other fan destinations and licensed venues, removing sales points of beer from Qatar’s FIFA World Cup 2022 stadium perimeters,” FIFA said in a statement.

The move represents a reversal of organisers’ previous position.

The statement also thanked Ab InBev, a drink and brewing company that sells Budweiser beer for “understanding and continuous support”. The company has exclusive beverage rights for the tournament.

Analyst: Mané ‘glue’ of Senegal team
Senegal forward Sadio Mané’s leg injury will keep him from the playing in the World Cup, but the team can still be strong without him, according to African football journalist Gary al-Smith.

“The great thing about the Senegalese team is they have been built over the years and that unity, togetherness and talent most importantly I think should be enough even without Sadio Mané,” al-Smith told Al Jazeera from Accra.

“That is to say that there maybe be two or three able replacements on the pitch who can actually do what he does. What does he do? He scores goals,” he said.

“What people worry about is his absence is the glue with which he brings the team. He is like a talisman. He is like a totem. He is like the face of the team, and that’s what they lose without him being there.”

Eight lesser-known football World Cup heroes
As we move closer to the 2022 FIFA World Cup, fans across the world will reminisce about legends of the game, including Diego Maradona, Pele, Zinedine Zidane and Ronaldo.

The effect they had on previous tournaments, and the rest of the football calendar, is immense.

But, as special as those icons are, the World Cup has helped produce many inspiring stories that have written lesser-known players into footballing history.

From Italy’s Fabia Grosso to Cameroon’s Roger Milla, learn more about the lesser-known heroes who have made an impact.

‘Devastating’: Fans react to Sadio Mané injury
News that Senegalese forward Sadio Mané will be sidelined from the Qatar 2022 World Cup following a leg injury, has sparked concern — and frustration — about the team’s chances at the tournament.

Mané’s injury is a crushing blow to the Teranga Lions’ run at the World Cup trophy as Senegal’s first match against the Netherlands on Monday approaches.

One user called the injury “devastating for Senegal”.

Others questioned FIFA’s decision to hold the tournament during the mid-season.

Photos: See how fans have geared up for the tournament
From Doha’s Souq Waqif to the packed waterfront and colourful displays on city streets, Qatar has been abuzz ahead of football’s premier event.

See how fans from across the world have been celebrating in Qatar.

Finishing touches on chalet-style villas overlooking Katara
The much talked-about Katara Hills chalet-style villas – a Swiss-inspired World Cup accommodation option in Doha – are yet to be occupied by fans.

The individual chalets, which boast private pools and gardens, sit atop the green Katara Hills park nestled between the West Bay and the Pearl areas and overlooking Katara Cultural Village.

On Friday, workers could be seen on site as finishing touches were still being applied.

Local authorities have been busy inaugurating hotels, resorts and buildings to keep up with demand amid criticism over the lack of fan accommodation options in Qatar.

Doha’s Katara Cultural Village kicks off month of events
Doha’s Katara Cultural Village is today kicking off a month of events aimed at highlighting the local culture, as well as the culture of the teams competing in this year’s tournament.

Arabic calligraphy, the lute-type oud instrument and regional ceramics will all be part of the Arab heritage celebrated from November 18 to December 18. Events will also feature Paraguay, the Dominican Republic, Uruguay, Ecuador, Bosnia, Russia, Mexico, Indonesia, and Iran.

All told, there will be 51 events covering more than 300 activities during the month, according to organisers.

One of the most significant will be the 12th instalment of a festival highlighting the local dhow boats.

Qatar sleepy on Friday morning during prayers
The World Cup is just over 48 hours away but Doha is yet to shake off its usual weekend slumber, as the roads remain empty and music has died down early on Friday, when Muslim prayers take place in the country.

Fans that partied hard and long into the night are now taking a much-needed break before they go off again.

Friday is the first day of the weekend here in Qatar, and a holy day for Muslims around the world. It’s not until after the Friday prayers that residents typically make their way out of their homes.

Where are the teams staying in Qatar?
The 32 teams competing in the 2022 World Cup are staying and training across Qatar.

The majority of the teams are concentrated in a range of facilities across the capital, Doha: Argentina and Spain are training at Qatar University. Australia is at Aspire Academy, a sports education facility in the nearby al-Rayyan municipality. Morocco is staying at the Wyndham Doha in the sleek West Bay area.

Others are farther afield, with Germany at the Zulal Wellness Resort along Qatar’s northern-most coast and Belgium at the Hilton Salwa Beach Resort near the southern border with Saudi Arabia.

Opinion: Qatar World Cup about to shatter colonial myths
Larbi Sadiki, a professor of Arab Democratization at Qatar University, has argued that instead of mimicking ex-colonial powers, the World Cup in Qatar can help “decolonise” biased thinking about Arab and Muslim cultures.

While the “soft power” and “smart power” in Qatar’s diplomatic inventory have been credited by many for this moment, the World Cup deserves to be looked at through more than just the lens of international relations, Sadiki wrote.

Chants, parades and drumming: Teams arrive to excited fans
Morocco on Sunday. Tunisia on Monday. England on Wednesday. Argentina on Thursday: The 32 teams competing in this year’s tournament have been arriving in Qatar, where they have been greeted by excited supporters.

Add Mexico, Canada and Japan early on Friday.

Scenes of fans waving flags and marching in support of their favourite players – and gathering outside the hotels where the teams are staying – have become common across Qatar’s capital, Doha over the last week.

Qatar welcomes football stars, fans
The moment Qatar has been waiting for since 2010 is almost here: the World Cup 2022 is ready for kickoff.

As Sunday’s opening game nears, the excitement is palpable across the Gulf nation.

Fans have been dancing on the streets, replica football jerseys are selling out like sugary karak (milk tea), strings of miniature flags adorn corner shops, front yards, schools and skyscrapers are draped in gigantic posters of football heroes.

“I see more and more new faces on the street every day,” Bernard Wanjiku, a shop owner from Kenya, told Al Jazeera at his outlet in the old, bustling neighbourhood of Mansoura in Qatar’s capital city Doha.


Related posts

Leave a Comment