Over the next several weeks this site is going to publish various previews, recaps, and other articles about the 2022 FIFA World Cup. We are soccer fans who cover the New England Revolution of MLS and the United States national teams and are very excited for the USMNT’s return to what is normally a prestigious international event.
Except we feel the need to address the elephant in the room - the 2022 FIFA World Cup should not be happening right now in Qatar. There are too many issues from FIFA’s corruption to the culture and labor practices of the host country for us to mention - if you are a soccer fan you should be well versed in them by now.
FIFA President Gianni Infantino at news conference in Qatar: “Today I feel Qatari. Today I feel Arab. Today I feel African. Today I feel gay. Today I feel disabled. Today I feel a migrant worker” pic.twitter.com/1flQtGWAfS— Rob Harris (@RobHarris) November 19, 2022
The 2022 FIFA World Cup should not be taking place right now. It should never have been awarded to Qatar and any attempts at FIFA President Gianni Infantino to justify his organization’s decision from years ago will likely be roundly criticized.
Qatar as a nation does not have the infrastructure to host an event like this. They do not have a culture which can openly invite the world and the world’s media to their homeland and then seemingly attempt to control every aspect of the international community. This goes well beyond beer sales as I have more confidence in Qatar causing a major international incident by arresting protesters or members of the LGBTQ+ community than they are to host a successful major international sporting event.
We spent the night in a fan village near Lusail Stadium. Guests slowly checking in to find they can’t buy drinking water without a wristband. It’s 30 degrees. Nearest shop an hour walk. No one knows where the wristbands are. We’re told the festival is meant to kick off at 6.30pm pic.twitter.com/Fi7DPXqnrq— Rhia Chohan (@rhiachohan) November 19, 2022
As a sporting event, this tournament will likely be marred by injuries both prior to and during this tournament as players have to navigate a club season on barely two weeks off for some and then the grueling heat and humidity of training and playing in Qatar.
Fans are there to support their country and enjoy a global event that occurs once every four years and I expect it’s going to be a horrendous experience for most. Except the people who signed up for this, who deserve said experience:
Exclusive: fans who have travelled to the World Cup as part of a controversial paid-for supporters programme have been told by Qatari authorities that their cash has been cut.— Guardian sport (@guardian_sport) November 18, 2022
This however is a soccer blog full of volunteers across New England and the United States that does not have the resources to cover every single stupid and/or reprehensible thing FIFA and the host country have done and will likely continue to do over the next few weeks. We encourage our readers to follow and read the major international news outlets who will cover this as it’s important to remind FIFA and Qatar as often as possible that we shouldn’t be playing soccer over the next month.
One of the greatest events in the world has been tarnished, again, by corporate and organizational greed. I hope the soccer on the field is tremendous and enjoyable for everyone, because not everyone is welcome to go to Qatar and support their country. Soccer as a sport is for everyone, except apparently, at the world’s biggest stage this time around.