8 veterans likely to play final World Cup match in Qatar

Canada’s return to the World Cup will not be overshadowed by the host Qatar issue

There is no sporting event in the world that is more meaningful and important, that draws more emotion and passion from more fans around the world than the FIFA World Cup.

Football is truly a global game. It is the most popular sport in the world which is played in every part of the planet. In terms of sports, football is the language of the world, removing all barriers and boundaries between people of different ethnicities, races and socio-economic backgrounds.

Thus, the World Cup is the last cultural representation of itself in this international language, making it the biggest sporting event in the world, surpassing even the IOC Olympics. That’s why billions of viewers from every country are expected to watch some part of the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, which starts on Sunday.

The power of national representation is by no means unique to football. But the World Cup manages to garner a more passionate, passionate and almost religious following from more fans around the world than any other event.

“Football is a universal language that we speak with different accents,” explained Tim Vickery, a Rio-based soccer journalist.

“The biggest patriotic act that most people engage in is cheering for their team during the World Cup. It reaches people who are otherwise not interested in football. It reaches them on a deeper level because it’s They are the country and their people represent it in the eyes of the rest of the world.

For the next month, the sport’s biggest icons – from veterans Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo to young superstars Kylian Mbappe and Padre – will take center stage for their respective countries during a historic tournament in the Middle East. Take it and play. Qatar represents a new frontier for FIFA, an opportunity to clear its chest and expand the game’s incredible footprint in a part of the world where even the Olympics have never gone before.

But not everything is sweet and light, and there is a bitter taste in the mouth about this World Cup. Twelve years have passed since Qatar won the right to host the tournament through FIFA’s bidding process, which has been dogged by allegations of bribery and corruption. Controversy over the choice of the small Gulf nation as host continues for various reasons.

While soccer will be front and center in the first World Cup when the opening game kicks off, there will continue to be an ongoing and important debate about Qatar’s ethical fitness to host such an event. Thousands of migrant workers have lost their lives in a frenzy to build seven new stadiums for the World Cup, while the country’s laws outlawing homosexuality are a point of controversy. Questions about Qatar’s abysmal track record when it comes to human rights are certain about this World Cup.

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In what can only be described as a laughable attempt to defuse the conflict and turn it into dialogue, FIFA president Gianni Infantino told a news conference in Doha on Saturday that he understood that the What is it like to discriminate after suffering for the pig. Hair and freckles as a child while growing up as the son of poor Italians who moved to Switzerland in search of a better life.

“Today I feel Qatar. Today I feel Arab. Today, I feel African. Today, I feel gay. Today I feel disabled. Today, I feel migrant worker,” Infantino said. said with a straight face.

No, Mr. Infantino. You may feel that way, but you’re not one of those things, and your misidentification of childhood bullying as equal to racial and sexual discrimination about red hair is not only ugly, but beyond color. you went Whatever you and your advisors thought you might have achieved by uttering such an ill-conceived statement was nowhere near the desired effect if the jeering you’re getting from around the world is any indication.

Infantino’s tone-deaf comments came less than 24 hours after another World Cup embarrassment when FIFA announced that Qatar had banned the sale of beer and alcohol in all World Cup stadiums. This is the first time the World Cup is being held in a conservative Muslim country that bans the consumption of alcohol in public places. Qatar won the hosting rights in 2010, so it has had more than a decade to organize it. Instead, it left for 24 hours, leaving millions of fans flocking to the Gulf on dry land.

It should be noted that the Qataris won the right to host the tournament, as they had promised that beer would be served in their stadiums during the tournament. Now, they’ve backtracked, which begs the question of who’s really running the show here: Qatar or FIFA?

“I feel absolutely 200 percent in control of this World Cup,” Infantino said.

But apparently, he isn’t, otherwise thirsty fans would be able to grab a cold pint of wine while watching the game.

Putting aside the moral quagmire that soccer fans will have to wade through over the next four weeks, this World Cup is special for fans of this country as it marks the Canadian men’s team’s return to the big dance for the second time. points out history

In 1986, an undrafted Canadian side made up of players most people have never heard of marked their World Cup debut in Mexico, going toe-to-toe with France – the Stars’ “gold Generation” such as Michel Platini, led by Alain Garris. and Jane Tigana – before eventually losing 1-0. But Canada perished in the heat and hot Mexican sun, suffering back-to-back defeats to the Soviet Union and Hungary as they went home without a goal.

Thirty-six years later, the Canadian men’s team, with exciting young players and coached by John Herdman, a master motivator, is back at the World Cup and ready for action. Belgium, Croatia and Morocco present tough challenges for Canada’s debut. But if Herdman has proven anything during his four years in charge, it’s that he can inspire his team to greatness. This Canadian side, enjoying the remarkable talents of Alphonso Davies, Jonathan David and Stefan Eustaquio, played with a fearlessness and attacking audacity, the likes of which fans in the country had never seen before.

Win, lose or draw, the rest of the world will soon find out at this World Cup what most Canadian fans already know: Canada is a soccer nation.

And for fans watching from home in Canada, they can at least raise a glass while their team takes the field.

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