By Cristian Reyes, Nov. 22, 2022

The World Cup is the biggest stage in soccer, possibly in all of sports, but Qatar hosting the 2022 World Cup has led to controversy and chaos.

From Nov. 20 to Dec. 18, 32 nations from around the world will compete in the World Cup tournament which occurs every four years. The tournament has been a spectacle for over 50 years as the 2022 event has had its fair share of complaints.

Qatar was announced in 2010 to host the 2022 World Cup, beating countries such as the U.S. and Australia, as the first Middle Eastern country to host the tournament despite never qualifying for the World Cup.

Jackson Gray | The Poly Post

The tournament’s biggest controversy among many is the change of season. Usually, the World Cup is played in the summer, so no other domestic soccer leagues will play during that time, allowing players to solely focus on the World Cup.

This year’s event will be in the fall and winter due to the extreme heat that occurs in Qatar during the summer, pausing the domestic club season for many players.

With the tournament occurring from November to December, it will be tough for fans from Cal Poly Pomona to watch matches which will take place at various times from 2 a.m. to 11 a.m. throughout the week.

Not only will many students be sleeping during games, but some students may have classes during some matches, ruining the experience they once had as kids watching the tournament at home during summer vacation.

“The normal stop in summer is a travel season,” said CPP economics professor and graduate coordinator Dr. Carsten Lange. “So, where you have a lot of people being home anyway, a stop during that time might be not that expensive than a stop now.”

Some players have played up to 20 games over just four months in their club season, leaving players headed to Qatar a week or so to resume play.

With players playing more games in a shorter amount of time, injury risk is increased. Key players such as Paul Pogba from France and Sadio Mane from Senegal will miss the tournament due to injury, weakening their nations’ squads.

CPP athletic trainer Albert Torres described the strain that a condensed schedule can have on athletes.

“If you over stimulate the body, if you continue going in that overload stimulus or stimulating situation, you’ll see more injuries,” said Torres.

Torres also mentioned that many factors come into play on a player’s health, such as a change in location, heat, stress and training load. Each of these things could play a part in an injury during the tournament.

Torres said that players need to stay committed, stick to a routine and communicate with their athletic trainers to take care of their body for the tournament.

With the World Cup taking place in the middle of the domestic season and many games in a short period of time, this could affect the level of play viewers see on the field.

CPP women’s soccer head coach Jay Mason believes the lower-level play may be more entertaining for spectators, but from a soccer standpoint it’s preferred to watch the best players and teams control the game.

“When you’re fatigued, you’re going to make mistakes,” said Mason. “Things are going to happen. Your emotional bandwidth might be a little bit smaller. So yeah, I think there’s going to be more mistakes.”

Fans typically witness the best players shine such as Lionel Messi in 2014 and Luka Modric in 2018. Now, with many club games already played in the past couple of months, it will take a toll on all players who might not play as intensely as in previous tournaments.

Besides the schedule change, there have been other controversies such as an alleged bribe to get the World Cup in Qatar in the first place, with ex-FIFA president, Sepp Blatter recently admitting that having Qatar host was a mistake and a bad choice.

A 2020 New York Times article explained that U.S. FIFA officials found five members of FIFA’s top board were bribed to have Russia host in 2018 and Qatar in 2022.

According to Business Insider, the tournament will have cost Qatar over $229 billion, while the last World Cup nation, Russia spent $14.2 billion.

Qatar had to build seven stadiums from scratch and reconstruct one while also adding more roads and railroads. This meant the country had to hire many workers to get this job done in 12 years since the announcement in 2010.

“An investment like that always has a big impact,” said Dr. Lange. “It has a direct impact obviously which are the costs, and it has an indirect impact. They had a lot of guest workers. They would have to live somewhere, they would have to eat somewhere, so yes it has an impact like every sports event.”

Further, Qatar’s stadium building, which will host World Cup games, has been linked to a series of deaths.The Guardian reported that 37 deaths were related to the construction but 34 were classified as non-work related.

Overall, since the Qatar-hosting announcement in 2010, 6,750 South Asian migrants have died in Qatar. With stadiums built on dead hands and corruptive policies to host it to begin with, fans worldwide will find it difficult to enjoy the tournament with this knowledge.

During the World Cup, the country of Qatar has a strict set of rules players and fans must follow. According to Sportingnews, alcohol consumption will be limited and must be consumed in certain fan areas. Any excessively intimate acts will also be punishable, and rules against homosexuality are strict since it is still illegal in Qatar.

The app “Ehteraz” is a COVID tracking app for the 2022 World Cup. The app is invasive as it is required for fans over the age of 18, has access to data, can override all other apps and access to phones, and doesn’t shut down.

It may be possible that the app is a way for the country to gain private information from people without their consent. An SBNation article questioned Qatar’s care for COVID safety as they mention that they lifted the requirement of a negative test before arriving to the country yet are making this app mandatory.

The World Cup is an event where fans from all over the world get together every four years and watch their nations compete. An event that is full of celebration and traditions heads to Qatar, a country that is extremely hot, full of corruption and has strict laws. It is likely that 2022 World Cup will be tough for fans to enjoy.

Feature image by Jackson Gray

  • Show Comments (0)

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

comment *

  • name *

  • email *

  • website *

You May Also Like

Track and Field competes at NCAA Championship

By Tammy Wong The Broncos competed in the NCAA Division II National Track and ...

Cross Country runs in CCAA championships

By David Wilson Cal Poly Pomona’s cross country teams competed in the California Collegiate ...

Coach Mason plans season to build great program

By Dennis Erturk For new women’s head soccer coach Jay Mason, the task of ...