While this world championship is unlike any other because of the start time and location in the Middle East, a new world competition comes to mind. Think about it. Climate unsuitable for hosting the event, random accommodations, stories of government incursion and sportswear. That sounds like the Winter Olympics in Beijing.
These games were overwhelmed with storylines that did not involve the competitors. From isolated athletes crying in their glorified dormitories on Instagram to surreal ski conditions and everything that Russia has done, it just wasn’t really fun to watch. Athletes in niche sports that only garner attention every four years smiled through the ceremonies and missteps, leaving audiences genuinely wondering if it was all necessary.
The toll events like the World Cup and Olympics that host countries have to bear have outweighed the benefits for some time. The Los Angelinos are actively protesting the 2028 Summer Games with the slogan “NOlympic Games.” There was the farce of the Sochi Winter Olympics and the story behind it Russia rounds up and executes stray dogs before the event. The aftermath of Rio de Janeiro, where the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Summer Games were held is well documented.
From the moment Qatar won the bid, scandals ensued. There was the allegedly corrupt one process, migrant worker deathsand restructuring of the club calendar to play the games during the non-heatwave Months. The players haven’t even hit the pitch, and the List of missing big names seems as long as the list of healthy superstars, state officials are say LGBTQ fans Beware of displaying Pride flags, David Beckham got his gay card revoked to the being a paid propagandist of Qatarare told to media members they can’t do their jobthere is delayed beer sales bans around the stadiumsand even rumors about a match-fixing scandal participation of the host country. (Corresponding Front office sportsFIFA is Working with Sportsradar to identify suspects.)
Still, it’s hard not to get excited afterwards read a couple group previews and the anticipation of football sounds in the morning for the next few weeks.
This is where the World Cup differs from the Olympic Games. Soccer is the most popular sport on the planet. Familiar faces can cement legacies, and young players can storm onto the stage with the subtlety of the Kool-Aid Man. It’s impossible to look at Diego Forlan, Benjamin Pavard and James Rodriguez and not think of miracle World Cup goals after they put on exquisite, unforgettable shows.
The influence of international football on a country’s self-confidence and pride is also great. A blast hitting the back of the net sets off watch parties as if the New Year Ball has reached the end of its fall. scenes. All are absolute scenes.
Football’s ability to make its fans happy is uncanny. And that’s why it was so valuable for a place like Qatar to put on. We all know those people in high school or college who would throw parties with the sole purpose of getting people to like them because they sucked as people.
It’s not a very subtle or ingenious tactic. I think the exact description would be pathetic. Qatar had FIFA use them to throw a party and guess what, nobody stays to help with the cleanup. Most likely, all guests will forget the generosity the second they leave, if they were ever grateful for it.
I would like to convey this to our not so gracious hosts. No matter how fun it is, people aren’t going to say, ‘You know what the highlight of my World Cup was? The country. I mean how fun did Qatar look? I can’t wait to see it for myself.”
It’s not pleasant to stew over how complicit we are in this charade. We’d rather think of something else fret that teams don’t protest with the zeal we would prefer, or write self-righteous columns and espouse the gospel of police outrage.
I’ll watch, but cheer for the USMNTfor my favorite players, for the beautiful game played at its most passionate – and for allowing Qatar to experience as much embarrassment as possible without hurting anyone else.
The people best placed to make this bewildering display of hospitality worse are the ones responsible, and so far they’re doing it pretty well.