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Morocco’s Football World Cup Team victory motivates Arab fans

The Qatar World Cup has been put on hold for a few days, which is good for the players and perhaps also for the viewers who get a respite after several thrilling games, especially on Tuesday when Morocco became the first Arab country to advance to the Football World Cup Quarter-finals. Tom Goldman of NPR reports from Doha. Arab supporters have been anticipating this inaugural Middle East World Cup with increasing fervour.

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 TOM GOLDMAN, BYLINE The startling Saudi Arabia victory over soccer dynasty Argentina was a shock. Then, when the Saudis began to wilt, Morocco took over. It won its group and eliminated seventh-ranked Spain in Tuesday’s knockout round. The Football World Cup Quarter-finals, which were unprecedented terrain for the Atlas Lions, were a result. Last night, Doha’s horn honking and yelling had died down, but not its pride.

Faisal al-Kattabi, a 25-year-old Saudi, was draped in a red Moroccan flag as he entered the city’s renowned Souq Waqif, a maze-like market. FAISAL AL-KATTABI Arabic is the official language of Morocco, Tunisia, and Saudi Arabia. And we stand by us. Together, we are here A Palestinian Jordanian named Bilal Lkhawaja was exploring the Souq with his brother and his 12-year-old boys. The four of them were decked up in flags and FIFA World Cup Team Morocco T-shirts.

According to L Khawaja, a large portion of the Qatar World Cup typically views them as less capable since they are from Arab nations, whether in sports or other arenas. He argues Football World Cup victory helps overcome those misperceptions. Tell me, do you know or have you heard that the Arab team won the World Cup? No. Did you know that the Arab Football World Cup Team wins four medals, three of them being gold? No.

We thus attempt to alter this narrative using the entire Arab team. They waved the Palestinian flag, which has been seen everywhere at this Qatar World Cup, both in the fans and on the pitch, as they posed for a picture. After beating Spain, an ecstatic Moroccan team showed it. FIFA World Cup, the world’s governing body of soccer, has not formally responded to queries about what would seem to be a double standard.

The Qatar World Cup organisers have expressed opposition to anyone donning rainbow colours to show solidarity for LGBTQ groups or to make political statements against the Iranian regime.  Those flying the Palestinian flag, which some view as making a comparable political message, have not. L Khawaja only expresses his happiness at the attention being drawn to the struggle for rights and statehood of the Palestinian people during this FIFA World Cup and, maybe, during the next FIFA World Cup.

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Morocco VS Portugal Football World cup Tickets | Qatar World Cup Tickets | Football World Cup Tickets | Football World Cup Final Tickets

L KHAWAJA I like this. Perhaps Americans should clarify what this is the next time. Maybe Mexico the next time. Despite L Khawaja’s frequent declarations that he was unwilling to engage in politics, the occupation of the Palestinian territories by Israel has proven to be one of the Middle East FIFA World Cup’s most divisive political topics. Israeli reporters covering the event posted recordings of themselves being rejected by Arab supporters on social media.

Which is where most of the action took place. GOLDMAN It’s a common belief that even while governments foster conflict, individuals get along. The situation has been the contrary in Qatar World Cup. While the Globe Cup’s theme is football connects the world, a well of suspicion is visible despite Israel striking new partnerships with Arab nations, notably Morocco. NPR News, Tom Goldman, Doha. NPR supplied the transcript Copyright NPR.

Morocco chasing history in Football World Cup

An increasingly confident Morocco Football World Cup team that orchestrated victory over Spain will look to prolong their fairytale run in their FIFA World Cup Quarter-final matchup with Portugal after springing the latest World Cup shock in a tournament that has seen its fair share. In 1986 in Mexico, Morocco created history by becoming the first African nation to advance to the round of 16. They now have a chance to go to the semifinals against a fervent crowd.

That has been boosted by support from much of the rest of the region, making them the first semifinalists from Africa and the Arab world. Morocco previously made a joke of their underdog reputation by winning a difficult group F ahead of the 2018 Football World Cup. Finalists Croatia and second-ranked Belgium would undoubtedly relish another chance to succeed as an underdog. Their ability to be unpredictable on the counterattack.

And defensively resilient has been the cornerstone of their success in the Qatar World Cup, and they implemented this plan well against the 2010 winners Spain. In two hours of exhausting play, Morocco refused to be hypnotised by their opponents’ amazing 1019 passes. Keeping the score at 0-0 before advancing to the round of 16 on penalties. Contrarily, Portugal’s Football World Cup Team opponents on Saturday (2 a.m. Sunday AEDT).

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Morocco VS Portugal Football World cup Tickets | Qatar World Cup Tickets | Football World Cup Tickets | Football World Cup Final Tickets

Who began without Cristiano Ronaldo, put on a stunning display of attacking mastery in their 6-1 thrashing of Switzerland following an erratic group stage? Although Portugal’s FIFA World Cup Team proved they could succeed without their talisman by moving Ronaldo to the bench, his absence seemed to energise the squad as they were more agile and fluid without the 37-year-old. Goncalo Ramos, a 21-year-old substitute for Ronaldo on the night, scored the first hat trick of the tournament.

And seemed certain to keep his spot to face a formidable Moroccan defence. Morocco wants to make history in the World Cup at least one more time. The North African nation has already made its mark in Qatar, defeating Spain on Tuesday in a penalty shootout to progress to the quarterfinal match against Portugal at the FIFA World Cup. But they’re not about to stop now. The goal of the team led by manager Walid Regragui is to become the first country in Africa.

To ever reach a Football World Cup Quarter-final. Three previous African nations have reached the last eight and just missed moving on, with Cameroon in 1990, Senegal in 2002, and Ghana in 2010 all losing in extra time or on penalties. Yassine Bounou, a goalie from Montreal, helped the Morocco Football World Cup Team defeat Croatia, Belgium, and Canada to win Group F by conceding just one goal in three games an own goal from centre-back Nayef Aguerd from a pass from left-back Sam Adekugbe.

After a 0-0 tie in regulation and extra time, the goalie then put up an outstanding performance against Spain. In the Round of 16 encounters, stopped three penalty shots to advance Morocco FIFA World Cup Team.  It was the country’s second Round-of-16 participation having made it there in 1986 but losing to then-West Germany by a score of 1-0. Portugal previously experienced a similar one-off triumph when a team led by Eusebio finished third at the 1966 tournament in England.

Making just one more appearance in the following 36 years. But since 2002, the Portuguese have participated in every FIFA World Cup, but they have only done so once, in 2006, when a young team under Cristiano Ronaldo finished fourth after falling to France in the Football World Cup Semifinals. The former Real Madrid player has assumed a very different position. As his nation once more found a way to reach the top 8.

 The 37-year-old was benched by manager Fernando Santos in favour of 21-year-old striker Goncalo Ramos after three subpar performances by the 37-year-old during a group stage play. Ramos went on to score a hat-trick against Switzerland on way to a 6-1 triumph. A gifted new generation of Portuguese players appears to no longer depend on a single star. To elevate their FIFA World Cup Team to new heights.

With roughly half of the team based in Manchester, Bruno Fernandes and Diogo Dalot of United, together with Bernardo Silva and Rben Dias of City, make up a strong core that is only now finding its footing. Joo Felix of Atletico de Madrid and Rafael Leo of Milan, both 23 years old, provide youth, speed, and potential.

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Morocco VS Portugal Football World cup Tickets | Qatar World Cup Tickets | Football World Cup Tickets | Football World Cup Final Tickets

Pepe, a veteran of the national team who scored his first Football World Cup goal against Switzerland on Tuesday in their Round of 16 encounters, provides the seasoned leadership that a youthful team occasionally needs. They will all be tasked with stopping a talented and expertly-coached Moroccan lineup that includes members of several elite European teams, including Achraf Hakimi of PSG’s right back.

Hakim Ziyech of Chelsea’s wing, Youssef En-Nesyri of Sevilla’s strikers, Noussair Mazraoui of Bayern Munich’s left back, and Achraf Hakimi of PSG’s right back. The Atlas Lions are on an eight-game winning streak thanks to the defence, which is coached by Bounou, also known as Bono, which only conceded two goals during that span. The two teams have faced off twice in FIFA World Cup history.

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Local Charity to redistribute unused food at Qatar Football World Cup

Local Charity to redistribute unused food at Qatar Football World Cup

What happens with unused food at a huge international event like the Football World Cup? In Qatar, the tournament organizing committee has planned a favourable solution, partnering with local charity Hifz Alnaema to confirm that unused and extra food is donated for relocation to workers and other recipients as part of the wider Food Waste Minimization exertion.

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Local Charity to redistribute unused food at Qatar Football World Cup
Local Charity to redistribute unused food at Qatar Football World Cup

The Food Waste Minimization program was recognized in the wake of learnings from the FIFA Arab Cup 2021 where it was experiential that organics, counting food, included an essential portion of total waste. To prevent the removal of otherwise safe, consumable food, it was agreed to work with the local specialists at Hifz Alnaema the first and oldest food bank and food recovery program in Qatar who will be accountable for improving surplus food from 12 venues, counting stadiums and fan zones, to be reallocated to recipients in need.

The joint program is not the first obliging initiative between Qatar Football World Cup and Hifz Alnaema, as before over 1,400 meals were donated and brought during the Football World Cup Draw and Congress in March. Since processes started in some official FIFA World Cup Sites in October 2022, thousands more meals have been given.

Jose Retana, Sustainability Director for Qatar Football World Cup Qatar LLC supposed, “The Food Waste Minimization program be contingent on local civilian and social organizations like Hifz Alnaema with the network and capitals to not only ensure the safe redistribution of food capitals but also to suggest innovative sustainability solutions for future tournaments and alike global events.”

Since 2008, Hifz Alnaema has worked closely with local groups to recuperate and redistribute meals from hotels, events, and restaurants. Their vision is specified simply as a waste-free Qatar and over the years they have prolonged their redistribution doings to include clothing, furniture, appliances, electronics, and other goods. To date, Hifz Alnaema has aided over 3.76 million beneficiaries and delivered over 3.8 million meals.

Ali Ayed Al-Qahtani, Supervisory Director of Hifz Alnaema, remarked A tournament like the FIFA World Cup includes much more than just football. Through the companies with local government and community organizations, a complete vision for social, environmental, and humanitarian sustainability comes to life, helping thousands outside the tournament and having a lasting, transformative result on the local culture of charity and social cohesion.

Local Charity to redistribute unused food at Qatar Football World Cup
Local Charity to redistribute unused food at Qatar Football World Cup

In addition to food donations, the Food Waste Minimization program also includes meal planning and order version to minimize unconsumed meals. In addition, food from the tournament that is no longer safe for ingesting will be composted at stadiums and other venues. This compost is treated together with pitch grass and other organic material to create manure that is used in crossways farmhouses in Qatar.

Qatar’s World Cup is a festival of cosmopolitanism festival of cosmopolitanism

I’ve spent years writing about the rise of nationalism. Trump, Brexit, Putin, Bolsonaro, and the rest were supposedly a backlash against globalization only elites still liked. Then came this World Cup, and everyone seized on a clash of civilizations. Westerners opposed Qatar’s mistreatment of migrant workers and LGBT+ people. Arabs called us hypocritical racists. We wanted to wear OneLove armbands. Some Arab fans wear Free Palestine armbands.

In short: nationalism, hatred, and incomprehension are everywhere. All that makes being at this World Cup confusing. I’m spending 16 hours a day around Doha and in stadiums, witnessing a different world. Broadly speaking: the civilizations are getting along just fine. The World Cup is more a festival of cosmopolitanism than of nationalism. To quote FIFA’s impossibly cheesy but possibly correct slogan: “Football unites the world. Most fans here are affluent football tourists, from everywhere from Dubai to Durban, often supporting multiple teams. But even among the minority that’s single-mindedly backing their country, comity holds.

In a typical metro carriage during the first round, you saw male Saudi fans packed with mixed groups of Iranians and singing Mexicans, watched benignly by shaven-headed Englishmen, everyone filming everyone else on their phones. Women in full hijab mingle with women in shorts. Brazilians mingle with Argentines. People aren’t just tolerant of religious differences. They are tolerant of breathing in somebody’s body odour and listening to their voice messages on the speaker at 1 am in a crammed carriage after their team has lost. The main civilizational divide here is by height: fans from rich countries seem to be on average a head taller than those from the Global South. Worldwide Tickets and Hospitality offers Football World Cup tickets for the Qatar Football World Cup at the best prices. Football fanatics and buy Football World Cup Tickets at exclusively discounted prices.

Local Charity to redistribute unused food at Qatar Football World Cup
Local Charity to redistribute unused food at Qatar Football World Cup

But the latter comes, by definition, from their national elites. Exclusion at this World Cup is class-based: the only poor people here are the migrant workers pushing us into trains. I remember more conflictual times. At my first World Cup in Italy in 1990, the two officials at a tiny border post on the Franco-Italian frontier initially refused to let me and my friends in: we were young Englishmen, so we must be hooligans. For many years, every town where England played went into terrifying lockdown. An FT colleague, covering the hooliganism in Toulouse in 1998, spontaneously turned policeman, shouting at an Englishman kicking a French car: Why are you doing that? They’re French, in it, explained the hooligan.

You’re in France! my colleague revealed, to no avail. Here in Doha, nobody attempts to segregate rival fans. The Turkish, Jordanian, and Pakistani policemen hired by Qatar for the tournament seem to spend their days pointing people the way. Tolerance prevails back home too. In many countries, World Cup games have become the biggest shared nationalist experience, judged by TV viewing figures. Those 11 young men in polyester shirts are the nation-made flesh. Yet when they lose, the nation goes quietly to bed. The next morning, after a few whines on the Slack channel about the team’s manager, everyone moves on.

The players share the same spirit. Forty years ago, matches like France-West Germany or Poland-USSR evoked national passions that transcended football. Today’s Gen Zers treat opponents as colleagues. After the US eliminated Iran, American players including Timothy Weah, son of Liberia’s president consoled weeping Iranians. The great angry exception was Serbia-Switzerland, which briefly erupted into entertaining on-field brawls after Granit Xhaka, a Swiss player of Kosovan origin, provoked Serbian opponents. But when the game ended with Serbia’s elimination, another Swiss-Kosovan, the brilliant Xherdan Shaqiri, waddled around the field hugging Serbs. The Uruguayans did make their ritual enraged exit, blaming the referees, but the most heated conflicts here were between Belgian players.

Local Charity to redistribute unused food at Qatar Football World Cup
Local Charity to redistribute unused food at Qatar Football World Cup

After 56 matches, there had been only two red cards: one for the Welsh goalkeeper for illegally stopping an attack, and the other magnificently for Cameroon’s Vincent Aboubakar, one of the lights of this World Cup. He already had a yellow card when he scored the last-minute winner against Brazil (OK, Brazil’s second 11) and took off his shirt, which qualified as an illegal celebration. The referee smiled, patted him on the head, and then apologetically sent him off.

Aboubakar saluted him amicably and jogged off. When the tournament ends, I expect FIFA’s president Gianni Infantino to proclaim, for some reason, this was the best Football World Cup ever. Saudi Arabia will then probably leverage the Gulf’s success by launching its bid, with Egypt and Greece, to host the 2030 World Cup. If the west found Qatar hard to swallow, good luck with Saudi Arabia.

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Football World Cup: Mum’s the word as Morocco’s success ascribed to players’ Moms

Moroccan parents hugging and praying for the coach and footballers excite supporters all over the world. Shortly after making the game-winning penalty kick for Morocco against Spain in FIFA Football World Cup, Achraf Hakimi hurried up to his mother. After hugging, the full-back, who was born in Madrid to Moroccan parents, gained notoriety a few days ago. He tweeted in Arabic with a heart emoji after the game, I love you, Mom. Photographers were prepared to take pictures once more.

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After his team’s thrilling Football World Cup triumph on Monday, Mouh kissed her son. At the Education City stadium in Doha, Morocco and the 2010 FIFA World Cup champions played to a scoreless draw that required penalties. Spain’s first three penalties were all missed, allowing Hakimi to send Spain packing with a perfectly timed Panenka chip attempt. Especially knowing their tale, Hakimi and his mother make my heart melt, one online user tweeted.

Fans all around the world have found delight and inspiration in the public appearance of the Moroccan team’s family, which has been credited with contributing to their legendary success. Families join the camp in Qatar World Cup Before the competition, the Moroccan football association and coach Walid Regragui decided that the team’s family members would be flown to Doha for an all-inclusive vacation. That implied having the backing of tens of thousands of spectators in stadiums in addition.

At their headquarters in Doha’s West Bay neighbourhood, the Atlas Lions welcomed their loved ones to the first Football World Cup ever to be staged in an Arab nation. Fatima, the mother of coach Regragui, was one among those who seized the chance to go to Qatar World Cup. She told Moroccan sports broadcaster Arriyadia, I’ve lived in France for more than 50 years, and this is the first competition for which I left Paris. Everyone who is watching will be proud of Walid. She told Al-Mountakhab.

That if you help him, He would help you. God bless everyone, including those who don’t like him. I raised him to be an excellent Muslim may God grant him and everyone else peace and comfort. Several Moroccan Football World Cup Team players entered the stands to rejoice with friends and family after the spectacular victory over Spain. One of them was the forward Youssef En-Nesyri, who was seen crying while hugging and kissing his father on camera.

The tactical ignorance of the Spanish is being overlooked in the celebration of Morocco’s FIFA World Cup victory. Omar D. Foda, a writer, made fun of Enrique for not bringing Arab mothers who, no matter what, think their kids are the finest thing ever. I’m grateful, Mom. In a video that has gone viral online, Yassine Bono Bounou’s mother prays for her son’s success before he faces a penalty shot from Sergio Busquets of Spain, which the Moroccan heroically saves. 

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Morocco VS Portugal Football World cup Tickets | Qatar World Cup Tickets | Football World Cup Tickets | Football World Cup Final Tickets

Being the first Middle East and North Africa squad to reach the last 8 since Turkey in 2002, Bono and his colleagues will now take on Portugal in the Football World Cup Quarter-finals on Saturday. Before his birth, Hakimi’s parents moved from Morocco to Spain, and he has since grabbed the hearts and minds of admirers all around the world. The Hakimi family is a member of the approximately 800,000-strong Moroccan diaspora in Spain, which is the biggest ethnic minority in the nation. 

He revealed on the Spanish television programme El Chiringuito that his mother worked as a cleaning lady and his father as a street vendor. For me, they sacrificed their lives. To ensure my success, they removed numerous things from my siblings. I perform today for them. The right-back for Paris Saint-Germain, who is considered one of the greatest in the world, was selected for Spain’s young squad but turned it down. I didn’t feel at home there and thought it wasn’t the proper environment for me.

Being Moroccan, it wasn’t because of anything in particular, but it wasn’t how I lived at home, which is the Arab culture, as he previously told Marca. Ayoub, a Moroccan residing in London who took part in the jubilant celebrations on Monday, claimed that Morocco’s tremendous support in Qatar World Cup contributed to the team’s unheard-of victory. Walid Regragui, our coach, requested that we do this. He told Middle East Eye that the stadium was filled with Moroccan chanting.

Which he truly wanted to hear. Regards, Moroccans. He said, Thank you dad, and thank you mom for your pride. The most effective African sides to ever compete in a FIFA World Cup. The largest celebration in history took place on Tuesday night at Education City Stadium in Doha when Morocco defeated Spain in the round of 16 of the Football World Cup. The bulk of the 44,000-person audience was overcome with excitement.

When Moroccan defender Achraf Hakimi’s audacious panenka penalty kick won the victory in FIFA World Cup. Moroccans flocked to the streets of almost every major city in Western Europe, including Casablanca, Rabat, Marrakesh, and more, to celebrate. The joyous masses were joined by even King Mohamed VI. In his post-game news conference, coach Walid Regragui made a very significant announcement after the players danced, embraced, and sobbed in the locker room.

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Morocco VS Portugal Football World cup Tickets | Qatar World Cup Tickets | Football World Cup Tickets | Football World Cup Final Tickets

We need to be ambitious in Africa at some time, he remarked, and why not try to win the Football World Cup, even if it would be challenging. It is appropriate that Regragui, who stands for a paradigm change in African coaching, proclaimed that it signalled a paradigm shift in how African nations approach the World Cup. He not only spent his formative years coaching domestic football in Morocco, where he got his start, but he is also a member of the first Pro Licence class of 2018.

The first set of coaches to get the top coaching degree in football on the continent. He embodies all that is admirable about African football, he is youthful, capable, worldly, brave, and fundamentally pan-Africanist. Some of the most ardent football supporters are on the African continent. Despite the continent’s passion for the game, it has yet to produce a squad that has advanced past the FIFA World Cup quarterfinal round.

Before the Football World Cup began, it didn’t seem probable that African countries would do well, but Cameroon, Tunisia, Ghana, Senegal, and Morocco all displayed excellent play in Qatar. Senegal’s odyssey came to an end after their 3-0 loss to England in the knockout rounds. In the meantime, Morocco advanced after shocking Spain and Luis Enrique in a penalty shootout to reach the FIFA World Cup quarterfinals for the first time.

Only Nigeria and Algeria advanced past the round of 16 in the 2014 FIFA World Cup, and no African nation advanced past the group stage at the 2018 World Cup in Russia, reflecting the dismal performance of African sides in the previous two competitions. Only four African nations have ever advanced to the quarterfinals of the World Cup: Ghana (2010), Senegal (2002), Cameron (1990), and most recently, Morocco (2022). The unexpected teams in the 1990 World Cup in Italy were Cameroon.

After defeating the reigning world champions Argentina in their inaugural match, the Indomitable Lions won their group. They extended their winning streak by defeating Colombia in the round of 16. However, they were eliminated from the Qatar World Cup after losing to England 3-2 in the round of eight. Cameroon has not advanced past the group stage since the 1990 quarterfinals. Morocco’s season began with a scoreless draw against Croatia before pulling off an unexpected 2-0 victory over Belgium.

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Morocco VS Portugal Football World cup Tickets | Qatar World Cup Tickets | Football World Cup Tickets | Football World Cup Final Tickets

As group F champions thanks to a 2-1 victory against the Canada Football World Cup Team in their last match, they will face Spain in the round of 16 after qualifying as Group F winners. The game went into overtime and then penalties in a rather heated contest. Achraf Hakimi of Paris Saint-Germain scored the game-changing penalty with a Panenka to advance the African country to the FIFA World Cup Quarter-finals as Spain failed to convert any of their three penalties.

Morocco’s Football World Cup experience won’t get any simpler because they play Portugal in the round of 16 on Saturday. Although no African team has ever advanced past the quarterfinals, Morocco has demonstrated perseverance and character throughout the competition, and they have a good chance of shocking Portugal.

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At the Football World Cup in Qatar, everyone is welcome

At the Football World Cup in Qatar, everyone is welcome

FIFA President Gianni Infantino, in a letter to all the 32 countries competing at Qatar Football World Cup, wrote that everybody is welcome in Qatar irrespective of religion, gender, sexual location, or nationality. The state on the ground has been somewhat different than the insight in the hospitality lounges that he occupies.

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At the Football World Cup in Qatar, everyone is welcome
At the Football World Cup in Qatar, everyone is welcome

You’ve perhaps seen that clip. You know, that videotape of Cameroonian football legend Samuel Eto’o trying to present the business end of his foot to a pesky fan’s torso after a hostility during the Brazil-South Korea game at the Football World Cup. After the video went viral, Eto’o offered something of a half-regret for his actions, which he said do not match his nature.

I had a violent argument with a person who was perhaps an Algerian supporter, Eto’o wrote in a statement he tweeted. As a matter of amplification of his violent argument the right word would be attacked since the fan in question never hits back, Eto’o stated how he had been targeted with relentless incitement and daily harassment from Algerian followers since Cameroon edged past their side to qualify for the Football World Cup on the away goals rule.

Eto’o is more than a former footballer. He’s the President of the Cameroonian Football Federation. He’s a Global Legacy Ambassador for the Qatar Football World Cup Organising committee. And he’s a part of the FIFA Legends program, which uses former footballers to endorse the sport. In short, he’s a man carrying substantial heft and social standing in footballing circles. Supposed Mamouni, the Algerian YouTuber who was assaulted, has supposed that he had listed a grievance with the police in Qatar. Nonetheless, would anyone be astonished if nothing came out of it? Does anybody imagine FIFA dropping Eto’o from the FIFA Legends program or Qatar World Cup organizers telling the former star that he will not be welcome anymore at games?

FIFA President Gianni Infantino, in a strange letter to all the 32 football federations which had sides rival at Qatar World Cup, wrote that everybody is welcome in Qatar irrespective of origin, background, religion, gender, sexual location, or nationality.

At the Football World Cup in Qatar, everyone is welcome
At the Football World Cup in Qatar, everyone is welcome

In Qatar so far, one instruction has been in play: everybody is welcome, but some are more welcome than others. That’s why while normal followers have been told there will be no alcohol in the stands in any of the stadiums at Qatar World Cup, those who have access to luxury hospitality areas can drink whatever they want to when they want to while they’re seated in their posh seats in a nation where public ingesting of alcohol is unlawful on religious grounds.

In that letter to the 32 sides, Infantino also went on to add: “At FIFA, we try to respect all opinions and beliefs, without handing out moral lessons to the rest of the world. No one people or culture or nation is ‘better’ than any other.”

What then, Mr Infantino, is the point of this Football World Cup if not to prove one nation is better than others? Over the last fortnight, FIFA, at the behest of Qatar world Cup organizers, has tried its best to promote the ongoing edition of the Football World Cup as a Good Vibes Only event. It was with this motto at heart that Infantino exhorted the 32 teams to focus on football and instructed them that they should not allow football to get dragged into every ideological or political battle that exists. FIFA showed it meant business when it fined the Croatian football federation for taunts their followers aimed at Canadian goalkeeper Milan Borjan, who has Serbian roots. Worldwide Tickets and Hospitality offers Football World Cup tickets for the Qatar Football World Cup at the best prices. Football fanatics and buy Football World Cup Tickets at exclusively discounted prices.

At the Football World Cup in Qatar, everyone is welcome
At the Football World Cup in Qatar, everyone is welcome

Football’s global governing body also fined the Serbian football federation for a banner in the locker room where the map included the independent nation of Kosovo as a Serbian territory and a slogan that read, No Surrender. FIFA, though, appears not to have seen the Moroccan players celebrating their shock defeat over Spain with a Palestinian flag. That the host nation of Qatar is one of the biggest allies of the Palestinian cause is purely coincidental! Scores of Iranian fans have reported that they were not allowed to carry banners and flags supporting the protestors against the Iranian regime back home. Some of these banners carried slogans like Woman, Life, Freedom, and Mahsa Amini, a tribute to the 22-year-old Iranian woman who died at the hands of the nation’s morality police.

FIFA later released a statement assuring Iranian fans that they could carry banners into stadiums after Iran had already been knocked out. Another likely coincidence: Iran and Qatar are known to share good diplomatic relations, with Iran being one of the first nations to recognize Qatar’s independence. It might also be pertinent to point out that while FIFA wants to make sure the Football World Cup is as apolitical as possible, it essentially threw out the Russian team from the qualifying tournament over the country’s invasion of Ukraine. And before FIFA starts to justify the ejection of Russia from the tournament by citing human rights violations, it might be prudent for it to run a basic internet search with the words Qatar Football World Cup and human rights together.

Political hot-button topics aside, FIFA has opened soundings into homophobic chanting by Ecuadorian and Mexican fans during group stage games. This is at a Football World Cup that FIFA gifted to a nation where homosexuality is a crime! This, at a FIFA World Cup where it almost arm-twisted seven European federations, which were planning to have their captains sport OneLove armbands, into dropping the idea with threats of multiple sanctions.

Qatar Football World Cup organizers, meanwhile, have selectively tried to stamp out symbols like rainbow flags and bucket hats in one instance, stadium authorities even got into an argument with a South American journalist carrying an even flag of Brazil’s northeastern state of Pernambuco that might symbolize support to the LGBTQI community.

At the Football World Cup in Qatar, everyone is welcome
At the Football World Cup in Qatar, everyone is welcome

Today, I feel Qatari. Today, I feel Arab. Today, I feel African, supposed to Infantino in a strange monologue in front of the world media just one day before the start of the Football World Cup. In his diatribe, he lectured Westerners and critics of the host nation and accused them of hypocrisy. A sense of irony was not among the list of things he was able to feel that day. Today, I feel gay.

Today I feel a migrant worker, continued the man who draws an annual salary that’s over $3 million but believed he could feel like men who had worked at building Qatar’s infrastructure in brutal conditions for as little as 50 or 60 pence an hour. Infantino has spent too much time in the stadium hospitality lounges you know; the ones where normal rules don’t apply to confuse feeling gay to make a point with really being gay in a nation where that carries criminal consequences.

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