COLOMBO: The FIFA World Cup 2022 which was awarded to Qatar in December 2010 was the first FIFA World Cup to be hosted in the Middle East. As is known, The FIFA World Cup is the biggest single-sport competition in the world the FIFA World Cup is a spectacle unlike any other in football and the greatest show on Earth.
The western media and naysayers relentlessly carried out a hostile campaign by citing the human rights, and treatment of foreign workers and LGBTQ before the football gala and doubted Qatar’s organizational ability to stage such spectacular fanfare.
Qatar seized the opportunity to welcome and connect with billions of people from across the globe and wanted to showcase its unique identity and culture and build new bridges of understanding.
The FIFA World Cup 2022 catalyzed the achievement of Qatar’s long-term development goals as laid out in the Qatar National Vision 2030. To make the vision into reality, Qatar has spent over $220 billion on infrastructure projects ahead of the World Cup including eight new stadiums, the state-of-the-art metro system, and hundreds of new hotel and apartment buildings within 50km of the centre of Qatar’s capital city Doha to the convenience of the spectators and players.
In contrast, next year’s FIFA World Cup 2026 will be jointly hosted by 16 cities in three North American countries- The United States, Canada, and Mexico. Imagine the logistical problems and the inconvenience which will invariably cause the spectators.
His Highness Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani Amir of the State of Qatar said: “From Qatar, from an Arab country, I welcome everyone to the World Cup 2022.
The spectacular opening ceremony was devoid of half-naked dances and profanity. Instead, it positively showcased Qatari culture and heritage while highlighting the football games’ ability to unite people from different countries and cultures. Indeed, it encapsulated the diversity among human beings, within a framework of peace and love
In the presence of Hollywood actor Morgan Freeman, FIFA World Cup ambassador Ghanim Al Muftah recited the Quranic verse 13 of Surat Al Hujurat:
O mankind, indeed We have created you from male and female and made you peoples and tribes that you may know one another. Indeed, the noblest of you in the sight of Allāh is the most righteous1 of you. Indeed, Allāh is Knowing and Aware.
As liquors were banned inside the stadiums, the spectators behaved graciously without any sign of hooliganism and even females were safe and their dignity was protected.
It also gave a rare opportunity to spectators to attend the mosques to learn more about the religion of Islam and its ethos. Thanks to the Qatar Islamic Cultural Centre which pleasantly portrayed the beauty of Islam. They have invited erudite Islamic scholars the world over which including Dr. Zakir Naik to assist the people to learn more about the noble religion of Islam and have a proper understanding.
This world Cup 2022 also gave pride to Arab and African nations. First came Saudi Arabia, which can now lay claim to having beaten the World Cup champion in the group stage. The second one was more sensational – Morocco was the darlings of the tournament. No one ever thought that Morocco, a minnow will become the first African and Arab team to advance to the World Cup semi-finals.
Another important thing to witness was, Morocco’s players offering the Sajdah Al Shukr (prostration of gratitude) as well as players kissing their mothers’ heads which widely circulated on social media.
By staging The FIFA World Cup 2022, Qatar has won the hearts and admiration of many soccer fans all across the world.
FIFA President Gianni Infantino hailed it as the “best ever”, following nearly a month during which “football reinforced its unique cohesive power by uniting the world in a spirit of peace and friendship”, and adopted a number of key decisions for the future of football.Long live Qatar