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Qatar World Cup 2022: FIFA chief says fans can 'survive' without beer for 3 hrs amid ban

Qatar World Cup 2022: FIFA chief says fans can 'survive' without beer for 3 hrs amid ban

Qatar World Cup 2022: World Cup stadiums are prohibited from selling alcohol in Qatar, FIFA announced on Friday.

The sale of alcohol is strictly controlled in Qatar as drinking in public areas is strictly prohibited. The sale of alcohol is strictly controlled in Qatar as drinking in public areas is strictly prohibited.

A day after ban imposed by Qatar, the host of this year’s FIFA World Cup, on sale of beer at the World Cup stadiums, FIFA President Gianni Infantino said that the fans can 'survive’ without the alcoholic beverage for three hours. The much-awaited football tournament will kick off on November 20, Sunday, where the host nation will take on Ecuador.  

Qatar is the first Middle-east nation to host the world cup. The sale of alcohol is strictly controlled in Qatar as drinking in public areas is strictly prohibited. Earlier, official sponsor Budweiser was allowed to sell beer at the Qatar World Cup official venues.

Speaking at the opening press conference in Doha, Infantino said: "We tried until the end to see whether allowing alcohol sales was possible." "If for three hours a day you cannot drink a beer, you will survive. Maybe there is a reason why in France, in Spain, in Scotland, alcohol is banned in stadiums. Maybe they (Qataris) are more intelligent than us, had thought maybe we should be doing that.”

As per the revised rules, fans and spectators can drink alcoholic beer in the evenings in the FIFA Fan Festival, which is a designated party area that also offers live music and activities.

Also read: FIFA World Cup in Qatar: Know about host nation, opening match, squads, ticket prices, and more

The ban came as a major shock to official sponsor US-based beer giant Budweiser, which has reportedly pumped in $75 million as part of the sponsorship agreement with FIFA. And now, when it won’t be allowed to sell its product or have any visibility at the matches, its brand value will suffer. This would a complete breach of the multimillion-dollar contract that FIFA and the beverage company have signed.

The FIFA chief on Saturday pointed out that even in previous World Cup editions, hosts were asked to make concessions. Like in 2014, Brazil was forced to change a law to allow alcohol sales in stadiums.

Messi’s injury

Earlier in the day, Argentinian forward and superstriker Lionel Messi and six other players reportedly missed Argentina’s field training camp at Qatar University as many feared that the ace footballer could be injured.  

The 35-year-old ace footballer is Argentina's captain and greatest hope for the upcoming tournament. The South American country hasn't succeeded in winning the top title since 1986, when superstar Diego Maradona led them to glory in Mexico. Many believe as Messi is paying his last world cup, it's time for Messi to end the nation's trophy drought.

Later in the day, Argentine outlet Ole reportedly said that the Paris Saint-Germain star was part of a ‘special’ programme in the gym, specially designed for him to prevent any risk of injury before the tournament.

Also read: Who will win the 2022 FIFA World Cup? Brazil is the favourite, Messi may score most goals

Published on: Nov 19, 2022, 6:42 PM IST
Posted by: Basudha Das, Nov 19, 2022, 6:34 PM IST