February 9 – Qatar’s 2022 World Cup organisers say they are anticipating full stadiums when the tournament takes place in 21 months’ time.
The Gulf state is currently hosting the Club World Cup and despite a reported spike in coronavirus cases and hospital admissions, local authorities are doing their utmost to quell the spread of the virus including banning overseas fans.
“Qatar started this matter gradually by hosting matches for the AFC Champions League without fans,” said Yasir al-Jamal, chairman of the Operations Office of Qatar’s Supreme Committee charged with organising the 2022 tournament.
“Then in December, capacity was raised to 30 percent which was followed by the Club World Cup at the same percentage… then reaching the 2022 World Cup with crowds of 100 percent,.”
“There is confidence in the measures that are taken in the stadiums and the metro network and in the means of entry and exit to preserve the safety of everyone.”
Club World Cup games are being played at two of the stadiums which will also host World Cup matches next year. Two more, Al Thumama and Ras Abu Abboud, could be used for the 22-nation Arab Cup competition in December.
“It is up to FIFA, but we hope that the Arab Cup will represent a golden opportunity to test the two stadiums,” Jamal told AFP.
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