Qatar bans alcohol from soccer World Cup stadiums

  

Category:  News & Politics

Via:  perrie-halpern  •  2 weeks ago  •  48 comments

By:   Alexander Smith

Qatar bans alcohol from soccer World Cup stadiums
Around 48 hours before the soccer World Cup kicks off, FIFA officials made the shocking announcement Friday that Qatar is banning alcohol sales from its

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T



Around 48 hours before the soccer World Cup kicks off, FIFA officials made the shocking announcement Friday that Qatar is banning alcohol sales from its stadium perimeters.

The sport's troubled international governing body said in a tweet that the decision had been made "following discussions between host country authorities and FIFA."

It is a remarkable, eleventh-hour policy change for the wealthy Gulf kingdom, which has had 12 years to organize the world's second-largest sporting event, after the Olympics.

This World Cup is already mired in controversy over Qatar's human rights record, its oppression of the LGBTQ+ community and its poor treatment of migrant workers, who built the tournament venues. And this highlights another flashpoint: between this notoriously boozy sport and the conservative, Muslim country hosting it.

Budweiser beer kiosks at the Khalifa International Stadium in Doha stand empty Friday.Miguel Medina / AFP - Getty Images

It also presents a major headache for major sponsor Budweiser, which has a $75 million advertising deal with FIFA.

FIFA's statement thanked AB InBev, Budweiser's parent company, for its "understanding and continuous support" to "cater for everyone" during the World Cup.

On Friday, after reports that Qatar's alcohol ban was imminent, Budweiser tweeted: "Well, this is awkward..."

When asked for comment, Qatar's Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy, which is organizing the event, directed NBC News to FIFA's statement.

It comes just two days before the opening ceremony and the first match between Qatar and Ecuador at the 60,000-capacity Al Bayt Stadium, just north of Doha.

Qatar is ruled by an absolute monarchy, and under its interpretation of Islamic law the sale of alcohol is heavily restricted. It agreed to relax these rules ahead of the World Cup, which it was awarded in 2010 despite concerns over its human rights record and a lack of soccer infrastructure.

A man rides a bicycle at Doha Corniche in Doha, Qatar, on Friday. Francois Nel / Getty Images

FIFA's statement said that alcohol will be served only at designated fan zones, named the FIFA Fan Festival, and other licensed sites.

It said "sales points of beer" will be "removed" from stadium perimeters, meaning the red Budweiser kiosks seen outside the Khalifa International Stadium in Doha, for example, may need to be moved or changed. Bud Zero, the brewer's alcohol-free drink, will still be allowed inside the stadium perimeters, the statement said, meaning that product could still be sold by those vendors.

Sky News, NBC News' British partner, also reported that alcohol will still be available for corporate hospitality.

In many countries, particularly in Europe, soccer still has a difficult relationship with booze. Last year, thousands of rowdy, ticketless England fans, many of them clearly intoxicated, stormed London's Wembley Stadium, marring the final between their team and Italy.

Nevertheless, many fans are disturbed by the idea of such a major event upending its policies so close to the event itself.

"If they can change their minds on this at a moment's notice, with no explanation, supporters will have understandable concerns about whether they will fulfil other promises relating to accommodation, transport or cultural issues," the Football Supporters' Association, a group covering fans in England and Wales, said in a statement.

Qatar has previously said all fans are welcome, including LGBTQ+ people, but that visitors should respect the nation's culture, in which public displays of affection by anyone are frowned upon.


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Buzz of the Orient
Professor Expert
1  Buzz of the Orient    2 weeks ago

Budweiser should renege on fulfilling its end of the agreement.  Qatar is also a major funder of the designated terrorist Hamas.  Next thing we'll hear is that all women who will attend will have to wear a hijab, or else will be treated like the women in Iran who didn't wear them "just right".  I can't wait to hear the horror stories from the people who attend the games. 

 
 
 
Ronin2
Professor Quiet
1.1  Ronin2  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @1    2 weeks ago

Budweiser is German owned now. They will keep their mouths shut, heads down; and hope their world wide sales make up the difference.

This is about which country pays the selection committee the most in bribes and perks. Qatar is very, very, very, rich. Just don't go looking at their underbelly.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Masters Quiet
1.2  Jack_TX  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @1    2 weeks ago
I can't wait to hear the horror stories from the people who attend the games. 

They're already everywhere.

Qatar is a perfect fit to host the marquis event of the most corrupt organization on the planet.

 
 
 
Split Personality
Professor Principal
1.2.1  Split Personality  replied to  Jack_TX @1.2    2 weeks ago
the most corrupt organization on the planet.

Not sure if it was the host country or not.  After being set up and approved,

FIFA suddenly told the WC teams that no arm bands especially the ones supporting

LBQT would be tolerated and first threatened the team captains with sanctions,

then decided anyone sporting the armbands would get a yellow card.  Refusal to comply would result in a second yellow and a suspension.

The 7 or 8 teams involved folded.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Masters Quiet
1.2.2  Jack_TX  replied to  Split Personality @1.2.1    2 weeks ago
Not sure if it was the host country or not.

It definitely is.

The armbands are just one extremely minor example.  

The Qatari's are basically like "now that the games have started and you can't move them, we're going back on pretty much every promise we made about behaving like civilized humans during the WC.  So the rest of the world can go fuck themselves.  What are they going to do about it?

Not sure if you saw it or not, but the very first goal of the tournament went against Qatar within 3 minutes of the first game.  

The referee was ready to continue play with Ecuador up 1-0, when he got an alert in his earpiece that they were reviewing the goal.  They then disallowed the goal based on VAR (video review) for offsides.  Absolutely nobody was offside at any point during any of the play.  It wasn't close. 

Prior to the game, the rumors had been flying that some sheik had paid 8 Ecuadoran players over $1m USD each to lose the game to Qatar.  So all of us watching the game at my house were watching to see if they were playing all out or not.  Then when the first goal was disallowed within 3 minutes, we were all relieved that they had just stayed with the traditional Italian methods and paid off the officials instead.

It was so ridiculous we all just burst out laughing.  We looked like that meme from Goodfellas.

 
 
 
Split Personality
Professor Principal
1.2.3  Split Personality  replied to  Jack_TX @1.2.2    2 weeks ago

Damn, where did my original response go? jrSmiley_87_smiley_image.gif

Any how, will Gianni or FIFA survive?

Some or most of the BS is just kneeling to the host nation.

But adding 10 minutes per half?

Threatening the players?

Today's German team photo says it all.

No armband, no comment, no opinion allowed.

320

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Masters Quiet
1.2.4  Jack_TX  replied to  Split Personality @1.2.3    2 weeks ago
Some or most of the BS is just kneeling to the host nation.

I don't know if you follow the game or not.  I do (my avatar is the shield of the team I support).

The kneeling has been a standard practice for years before all English Premier League games as part of their "no room for racism" campaign.  The EPL is the richest and most competitive in the world, so there are huge numbers of players in the WC from that league.

The officiating is generally horrible at all World Cups.  They make sure that they have refs from all over the world.  Sounds great, but if you normally work in the Guatemalan First Division, you are completely unprepared for the speed, strength, and sophistication of the players in the big European Leagues.  It's kinda like using minor league umpires.  There is a reason you're calling the Toledo Mud Hens instead of the NY Yankees.

 
 
 
Split Personality
Professor Principal
1.2.5  Split Personality  replied to  Jack_TX @1.2.4    2 weeks ago

I should have said caving to the host country jrSmiley_82_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
Split Personality
Professor Principal
1.2.6  Split Personality  replied to  Split Personality @1.2.5    2 weeks ago

I watched the LA vs Philly championship two weekends back

Decent game until the LA keeper tackled  a Philly player on a breakaway

and only got a yellow, no penalty shot.

Reminded me why I stopped watching after my kids stopped playing in HS & college.

Should be the easiest sport in the world to officiate and they still

are embarrassing.

I will probably suffer the USA - England game tomorrow...maybe

it depends on if the Lions are competitive with the Bills or not/s

 
 
 
GregTx
Junior Participates
1.2.7  GregTx  replied to  Split Personality @1.2.6    2 weeks ago

What? No Cowboys/Giants?

 
 
 
Split Personality
Professor Principal
1.2.8  Split Personality  replied to  Split Personality @1.2.6    2 weeks ago

My Baaad.  USA game is Friday?

 
 
 
Split Personality
Professor Principal
1.2.9  Split Personality  replied to  GregTx @1.2.7    2 weeks ago

Yep.  Still a conundrum.  The enemy of my Eagles vs the enemy of my Eagles?

both 7 - 3

No upside to this one

 

 
 
 
Thrawn 31
Professor Guide
2  Thrawn 31    2 weeks ago

Qatar was definitely a horrible choice to host this. Of course, like the Olympics, it is starting to get to the point where only despotic countries will host these vents because they are the only ones willing to bend over backwards for the governing association’s horseshit demands.

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Expert
2.1  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Thrawn 31 @2    2 weeks ago

You're right.  That's why the next summer Olympics will be in France, the next winter Olympics will be in Italy, and the next Soccer World Cup will be shared by the USA, Mexico and Canada - all despotic regimes.   Right on, Thrawn.

 
 
 
dennissmith
Freshman Silent
2.1.1  dennissmith  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @2.1    2 weeks ago

You did not list China as a despotic regime, they have hosted the Olympics.

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Expert
2.1.2  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  dennissmith @2.1.1    2 weeks ago

I only listed nations that are scheduled to host such future international sporting events, so why would I have added China or Japan or Brazil to my list anyways?   

 
 
 
dennissmith
Freshman Silent
2.1.3  dennissmith  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @2.1.2    2 weeks ago

Thankfully those who awarded the future events have learned from the countries you mentioned that were selected for past events.

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Expert
2.1.4  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  dennissmith @2.1.3    2 weeks ago

Yep, there's always room for improvement. 

 
 
 
Thrawn 31
Professor Guide
2.1.5  Thrawn 31  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @2.1    2 weeks ago

China, Russia, Qatar...

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Expert
2.1.6  Buzz of the Orient  replied to  Thrawn 31 @2.1.5    2 weeks ago

I think the only international sports event I ever watched that took place in Russia was a hockey one many decades ago, and the only thing I remember about it is that it was an amazing win for either Canada or the USA.  As for Qatar, Morgan Freemen is now dropped off my favourite actors list, and obviously Canada is hockey country - the Canadian team was typically Canadian and too polite while the Belgiian team played rough, got lots of penalties that the Canadians couldn't capitalize on, so I guess they needed to use a hockey stick to get a shot near a goal.   As for China, if one wasn't totally prejudiced against China they might admit that China put on a fabulous summer Olympics show, although the winter one was less spectacular and had to weather the covid pandemic.   

 
 
 
Sparty On
Professor Principal
3  Sparty On    2 weeks ago

Well look at that.  

An Arab country not keeping it’s word.

Shocking!

 
 
 
SteevieGee
Masters Silent
3.1  SteevieGee  replied to  Sparty On @3    2 weeks ago

I know.  I hate it when people use governments to inflict their religious views on everybody else.  Don't you?

 
 
 
Sparty On
Professor Principal
3.1.1  Sparty On  replied to  SteevieGee @3.1    2 weeks ago

Yes and vice versa.

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Sophomore Principal
4  Drinker of the Wry    2 weeks ago

Qatar is a very interesting little country that has gone from one of the world's poorest to richest countries in a relatively short time.  It's foreign policy is particularly unique, and independant.  Qatar maintains ties to all parties and regional players, including with organizations such as Hamas, Iran and the Taliban.  Qatar also has strong ties with China, Turkey, and the US.  

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
5  TᵢG    2 weeks ago

Qatar just lost any hope of future major events.

 
 
 
Split Personality
Professor Principal
5.1  Split Personality  replied to  TᵢG @5    2 weeks ago

In their sad loss to Ecuador today, they claimed to have 67,000 in attendance.

but especially after the opening ceremonies there were swaths of empty seats.

After the World Cup, Al Bayt Stadium will be retrofitted to 32,000 seats.

The new spaces will be hotel, retail and sports related.

It just doesn't sound like the average citizen of Qatar is really into soccer.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
5.1.1  TᵢG  replied to  Split Personality @5.1    2 weeks ago

I was referring to the general lack of credibility.   This would apply to any major event (any sport or otherwise).   People funding major events don't want the liability of Qatar, on a whim, imposing last minute restrictions that hurt business.

 
 
 
al Jizzerror
Junior Expert
5.1.2  al Jizzerror  replied to  TᵢG @5.1.1    2 weeks ago
last minute restrictions that hurt business.

Anheuser-Busch (Budweiser) is a fucking sponsor.  WTF?

I'm not a soccer fan.

There is way too much scoring for me.  /s

I quit drinking beer when I quit smoking cigarettes.

I would do what I always do when alcohol is prohibited.

I would carry concealed. 

I'd have a flask of whiskey in an inside pocket.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
5.1.3  TᵢG  replied to  al Jizzerror @5.1.2    2 weeks ago
Anheuser-Busch (Budweiser) is a fucking sponsor.  WTF?

They might have pulled out.   If not, they might be sticking in for the advertisement (unless that is pulled too).   Generally, WTF is a good exclamation.

 
 
 
Split Personality
Professor Principal
5.1.4  Split Personality  replied to  TᵢG @5.1.3    2 weeks ago

Apparently it was an implied threat but the kingdom really likes Bud Zero near beer and neither they nor Bud wanted to pullout altogether

In the end though, Budweiser is basically in it for the advertising 

not a few thousand gallons of beer.

 
 
 
al Jizzerror
Junior Expert
6  al Jizzerror    2 weeks ago

Qatar is ruled by an absolute monarchy, and under its interpretation of Islamic law the sale of alcohol is heavily restricted. It agreed to relax these rules ahead of the World Cup, which it was awarded in 2010 despite concerns over its human rights record and a lack of soccer infrastructure.

So basically Qatar lied about its alcohol policy so it could host the World Cup.

 
 
 
Hallux
Junior Principal
7  Hallux    2 weeks ago

From the commentary I take it that none have 'danced' with the blotto soccer hooligans that flock to these events.

 
 
 
Ender
Professor Principal
8  Ender    2 weeks ago
also reported that alcohol will still be available for corporate hospitality

Isn't that nice. The big wigs get to sit in their box and drink while the peons are not allowed...

 
 
 
Split Personality
Professor Principal
8.1  Split Personality  replied to  Ender @8    2 weeks ago

I noted that also jrSmiley_91_smiley_image.gif but they aren't the ones waving flags or drumming for hours on end, 

that reguires those empty alcohol calories.

 
 
 
independent Liberal
Freshman Silent
9  independent Liberal    2 weeks ago

I'm smuggling a flask under my wife's abayha. Qatar's traditional dress for women is a smugglers paradise. Public events are more fun when you have contraband anyway!

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Sophomore Principal
9.1  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  independent Liberal @9    2 weeks ago

Exactly, but if I was caught carrying into a concert, I had no worries of being flogged.

 
 
 
independent Liberal
Freshman Silent
9.1.1  independent Liberal  replied to  Drinker of the Wry @9.1    2 weeks ago

I guess I'll have explain to her the potential consequences. She'd be the one under Qatar law that would be flogged. Obviously the woman corrupted her innocent husband.

 
 
 
Freefaller
Professor Participates
10  Freefaller    2 weeks ago

Considering football fans history and reputation banning alcohol doesn't seem to be a bad idea

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
Professor Expert
11  Buzz of the Orient    2 weeks ago

I just watched the President or Chairman of FIFA on the news calling those who criticize Qatar for their human rights with respect to the workers who put together the facilities "hypocrites", that they should look at their own records about human rights.  I wonder how everyone feels about that.  

Personally, I would LOVE to have the money he was probably paid in bribes by Qatar to agree to hold the present World Cup there. 

 
 
 
al Jizzerror
Junior Expert
12  al Jizzerror    2 weeks ago

In the opener Ecuador defeated Qatar 2-0.

People in the stands chanted, "WE WANT BEER!"

 
 
 
bbl-1
Professor Quiet
13  bbl-1    2 weeks ago

Well, we could ban the Qatar oil rich from alcohol and hookers when they come to the US to visit.

 
 
 
charger 383
Professor Silent
13.1  charger 383  replied to  bbl-1 @13    2 weeks ago

Isn't that why they visit?

 
 
 
bbl-1
Professor Quiet
13.1.1  bbl-1  replied to  charger 383 @13.1    2 weeks ago

Theocratic hypocrites.  And Americans quake in fear while idolizing OIL.

 
 
 
Thrawn 31
Professor Guide
13.1.2  Thrawn 31  replied to  charger 383 @13.1    2 weeks ago

You have no idea. While I worked at a university the most/biggest problems we had were with "students" from the Middle East. They basically came here to do all the unislamic shit they cant do back home. 

 
 
 
al Jizzerror
Junior Expert
14  al Jizzerror    2 weeks ago

Qatar has been eliminated (after losing their two matches) from the World Cup competition that they're hosting.

 
 
 
al Jizzerror
Junior Expert
15  al Jizzerror    2 weeks ago

The USA team tried England 0-0.

It's definitely an upset even though it was a tie.

We play Iran next.

 
 
 
Split Personality
Professor Principal
15.1  Split Personality  replied to  al Jizzerror @15    one week ago

The English are already making excuses for not winning.

 
 
 
Sparty On
Professor Principal
15.2  Sparty On  replied to  al Jizzerror @15    one week ago

Yep, a draw with England is a win for the USA.    Great match by the way.

Now we just need to take care of business with Iran.    Hopefully the officiating is not a problem like it has been in some matches.

 
 

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