Qatar 2022 ...

It began almost a decade ago as the most unlikely offer to host a World Cup: an outrageous proposal for "air-conditioned" stages in the summer "hell" of a small, Arab-sized emirate the size of a state. But Qatar is the richest head of state on earth and in December 2010 its offer managed to convince FIFA members and turn the eyes of the planet on it.

2022 winter with ball

21 November 2022, head to the World! Qatar has endured ... hurricane challenges and is poised for the biggest football match on the planet. Many billions, incredible pitches, but also limitations. In four years the football planet will be waiting for the World Cup Qatar! 2022 winter with a ball in an Arab country and something that looked ... crazy, now it looks normal to us.

Since then, scheduled Qatar tournament hosting has survived a ... hurricane of challenges. There have been waves of corruption complaints that the secretary general of the "World Cup" organized by the World Cup, Hassan al-Tawadi, has repeatedly denied. FIFA's intensive ballot investigations have shown that Qatar's bid was more irregular than Australia's - or England's for 2018 - and the FBI's criminal investigation did nothing tangible against Qatar.

From 32 to 48 groups

There has been an international condemnation of the Qatari regime for migrant workers, which is now part of a reform process the government is carrying out in cooperation with the International Labor Organization. Last June, political hostilities broke out in the immediate area, and Qatar is still subject to real blockade by its much larger, threatening neighbor, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt. However, preparations inside the country are still largely unaffected and Qatar is now ruled out by FIFA president Gianni Infantino's early attempt to extend the tournament from 32 to 48 teams. The calendars have changed and the World Cup will be held in the Winter. As incredible as it may seem, in four years, on 21 November 2022, the World Cup will truly begin in Qatar, in one of seven new, all air-conditioned stages. Indeed, the 80.000 venue in the newly built Doha district of Lusail will also be the stadium that will host the final on December 18.

It is a country that is growing rapidly beyond any imagination because of the pioneering exploitation of liquefied natural gas and the tremendous investment in every corner of the globe. The official World Cup organizing budget ranges between 8-10 billion, though all this plan is backed by the $ 200s spent generally on a new subway system and beyond. This new country will probably become the most modern in the world. Of the eight stages, perhaps the most striking is the "Al Bayt" of 60.000 sites, located in a small desert, 20 miles north of Doha. "We are moving forward with our current plans. Our preparations are for World 32 teams, with eight stadiums. The work is going very well, ”stresses the 37 floor of Tower Al Bidda, the head of the organizing committee, Hassan Al Tawadi.

Infantino's intervention was partly caused by the idea that the exchange of struggles would somehow facilitate relations between Qatar and the warring countries. The expanded format was agreed for 2026, but no final decision has been made yet. The Qatarians could have insisted on the contract for 32 teams, but agreed to discuss the prospects. Thavandi adopts a diplomatic stance, but there is no excitement in sharing the World, at least with Saudi Arabia. Of course, it does not put forward the hostility that exists, but also the issue of human rights, but its reflection on stadiums, accommodation and sports centers.

Alcohol is forbidden in public

Qatar is preparing strong despite significant hurdles, but it's difficult to predict what future 1,5 million fans will do for 2022 in their spare time. Apart from Corniche, Souq Waqif and some cultural centers, Doha's list of tourist activities is limited to… shopping malls. The attraction of a World Cup in the Middle East is undeniable, but Qatar is so newly built, its scenery and infrastructure could feel artificial! It is a conservative Muslim country, where homosexuality is illegal and clothing for women must be conservative. Drinking alcohol is publicly prohibited, only in licensed bars and hotels.

But Tawadi asks for confidence. He's talking about a "solid" World Cup, where the stadiums are nearby, which was not the case in Brazil and Russia. The 60.000 rooms requested by FIFA will be complemented by accommodation on cruise ships and special campsites in the desert. "We are a relatively conservative society and public manifestations of love are not part of our culture. But we believe in mutual respect. Everyone will be welcome to 2022, regardless of their race, history, religion, gender or orientation. All we expect is the return of all our visitors to respect our culture and traditions. "

The chairman of the organizing committee puts an end to British hopes, not just alcohol. "Alcohol will not be available in public places, respecting our culture and traditions." What does it say to attract people? "The weather is going to be fantastic. Sun, sand, beaches ... We add to the desert experience ... an amazing, magical experience. " The countdown has begun…