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Serpico

Well-Known Member
Dec 30, 2019
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Awards:

Golden Boot: Mbappe

Golden Ball: Messi

Golden Glove: Martinez (Arg)

Young Player of Tournament: Enzo Fernandez

Fair Play Team: England
Fortunately all above (exception England) were there at the final to rec thier trophy. What’s the odds on that happening ?
 

XIIIMPC

Well-Known Member
Jul 23, 2010
391
884
So I've lived in Qatar 7 years.

Tournament was mostly well-run with a few minor and predictable issues. I also didn't have to worry about accommodation (although many friends have told me their rent was hiked 50% last year for the WC or some were evicted entirely - I got lucky in that mine stayed the same) so I never had to deal with that angle.

Some of the UK coverage of the tournament was fucking asinine, such as this: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/ar...fans-face-paying-80-pint-Qatar-World-Cup.html
It's not 80 pounds a pint. It never has been, ever, anywhere in Qatar to my knowledge. There is a brand new sports bar near me that I went to for Argentina/Mexico; I paid no entrance fee and had a pint that cost the usual 50qr (so about 12 quid now, thanks to Kwasi). Just such a stupid and irresponsible article to publish but then that's the Mail for you. There's legit problems here - so, so many of them - which I'll get into, without stoking the fire through pointlessly sensationalist lies and misleads. They're not short of actual ammunition so why bother with that?

Being able to go to every stadium within an hour, maybe an hour and a half, was excellent. Did two games in a day twice (England's and Wales').

I did think there was a chance it would be a total mess, because I have seen spectacular and regular examples of incompetence, miscommunication and lies during my time. But it did end up being relatively smooth in the end (restricted and expensive alcohol helped). However - it should be noted that this was expected.

Qatar's money combined with a low minimum wage (which was only introduced in the last couple of years), the fact that unions are illegal, health and safety laws being relatively lax (and only enforced when it suits, and many only implemented after most of the work was already done - same with Kafala), the "system of plausible deniability" that puts blame on various recruiting agencies for any issues, and it being a monarchy where everything is centralised basically meant that had they managed to not run this well, it would have been an all-time, spectacular failure.

They had the cash to bring in the best people, additional policing from overseas, and the ability to functionally overstaff every event (many restaurants here are regularly overstaffed, again due to the low minimum wage). They also made hosting this thing the sole focus for 12 years in a way others wouldn't - therefore all the new infrastructure that was built was built with the WC in mind.

The danger with this has always been that a well-run tournament would disguise or detract from the clear issues of FIFA's corrupt exco giving it to Qatar in the first place, the lies about having it in summer, lgbtq rights, the workers' rights and subsequent deaths, and the lack of payment for countless workers despite law changes.

None of that has changed, so while it was a well-run tournament, it cannot cleanse itself of the original sin - the bid should never, ever, have won. The efficiency of the tournament and the circumstances of the tournament bid combined with the 12-year buildup should not be conflated.

On a personal note: I accept accusations of hypocrisy. I went to the final last night and it absolutely ruled. I am a part of the filthy system. I've tried, while here, to raise things where possible but I accept that by working here there's an element of dining with the devil. However, I'd say two things: 1) there's no ethical consumption (most pay companies that run sweatshops or exploit labour some other way; all of us have contributed to climate change, etc). We all dine with the devil, what matters is the length of the spoon. 2) my being here is no more an endorsement of the Qatari government than my returning to live in the UK would be an endorsement of the Tories.

Oh PS: the Qatar team being that shit is a real disaster. World-class facilities, redefining the meaning of the word "citizenship", taking them out of their clubs to train them together for months, having won the Asian Cup... and they end up as the worst team to have played at a World Cup this century (at least). They had 12 years and unlimited cash to focus on nothing but being competent and not looking like a waste of a slot, and then they went and did that. Maybe next time don't lock them up together in Europe and go 6 months without a proper competitive game.
 
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nailsy

SC Supporter
Jul 24, 2005
30,534
46,625
Great final but never must the WC be played again in Dec and especially given to a country as Qatar. They have manufactured this tournament in so many ways. I watched because I love football but it was never comfortable knowing Qatar was financing the ‘football theme park’ ,(AS) tournament .

I wouldn't mind another December tournament as it's a better time to have it for certain parts of the world, but it should be made clear upfront when it will be played.
 

Serpico

Well-Known Member
Dec 30, 2019
3,072
4,561
I wouldn't mind another December tournament as it's a better time to have it for certain parts of the world, but it should be made clear upfront when it will be played.
Not for me-too disruptive -we have key players missing on Box/day. I thought players complained about too many games?
Keep it in the summer -maybe a little earlier a week or two once domestic leagues finished. I liked the quick - tournament start without the build up.
 

nailsy

SC Supporter
Jul 24, 2005
30,534
46,625
Not for me-too disruptive -we have key players missing on Box/day. I thought players complained about too many games?
Keep it in the summer -maybe a little earlier a week or two once domestic leagues finished. I liked the quick - tournament start without the build up.

Not everything revolves around the Premier League though. I can't really see how anyone could complain if they held one in four or five world cups during the European winter.
 

Marty

Audere est farce
Mar 10, 2005
39,645
61,834
I wouldn't mind another December tournament as it's a better time to have it for certain parts of the world, but it should be made clear upfront when it will be played.
Agree. The way Qatar bought the tournament and the promises that were made in the bid that they had to renege on have always been far more ethically problematic than simply staging it mid season.
 

XIIIMPC

Well-Known Member
Jul 23, 2010
391
884
Yep. That's another issue people wrongly conflate. Hosting it in the winter isn't so bad. Lying about it to get your bid through the door is.
 
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Serpico

Well-Known Member
Dec 30, 2019
3,072
4,561
Not everything revolves around the Premier League though. I can't really see how anyone could complain if they held one in four or five world cups during the European winter.
Yes agree but nor should it dictate over domestic football as it effects and may change the format, not just the PL., other top leagues and lower devisions but quality of player. A lot of players doing their bit for king and country, wouldn’t be at the WC if the PL didn’t exist .
 

XIIIMPC

Well-Known Member
Jul 23, 2010
391
884


This is what I said earlier but more succinctly tbh. The tournament being well-run in real time is not the same as hosting it there being a good idea.
 

timboyid

Well-Known Member
May 7, 2006
2,153
5,796
Apologies for being cynical, but what’s the worst that can happen? The World Cup has been and gone. The FIFA officials will retire rich as the next batch are brought in ready to accept the next set of bribes.
 

Phantom

Well-Known Member
Jun 6, 2005
5,853
3,210
Apologies for being cynical, but what’s the worst that can happen? The World Cup has been and gone. The FIFA officials will retire rich as the next batch are brought in ready to accept the next set of bribes.
I believe they could go to prison, but how likely that is I have no idea and it will depend on which government is handling it. Will probably take years to conclude any court case anyway
 

ExpatFan

Well-Known Member
May 11, 2005
1,864
1,650
A stain on the game that gets more repugnant every year. Qatar, Saudi and the UAE are XIXth century civilisations with oil money
Actually, according to their religion, they're in the year 1445, which, given some of their practices, sounds about right.
 

Marty

Audere est farce
Mar 10, 2005
39,645
61,834


It feels problematic that he was allowed to be part of the World Cup squad, to put it mildly.
 
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