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Arab Cup a 'perfect starter' before the 2022 World Cup 'main course' in Qatar

07:48 GMT 19/12/2021
The Arab Cup was an ideal dress rehearsal for the World Cup next year...

By December 19, 2022, the world would have experienced something unique - which hasn’t happened in over 100 years of football history. The biggest sporting extravaganza, FIFA World Cup, would have been hosted in the Middle-East for the very first time.

Football is arguably the most popular sport in the world and to experience a live game in various regions, cultures and climatic conditions add to it’s charm. Football fans, serious or even the casual ones, who would watch the World Cup in-person or even from the comfort of their drawing rooms, will certainly experience a new vibe. For example the 2010 World Cup remains distinct in the memories of football fans for the vuvuzelas and so on.

In 2022, the world is set to taste a unique flavour in football when the Middle-East region hosts the World Cup. And the Arab Cup has been the perfect ‘starter’ before the ‘main course’ next year.

The Arab Cup, in many ways, has shown that Qatar will be locked and loaded, ready to go, by the time the 2022 World Cup rolls along. The Arab Cup was played at six of the eight planned venues for the World Cup, showing the match-worthiness of the much-acclaimed venues.

From the Al Thumama to the Al Bayt, the stadium experience looked brilliant and the fans thoroughly enjoyed the spectacle. Not to mention the popularity the tournament enjoyed among the Arab region. You saw fans throng the stadiums and enjoy the dress rehearsal for the World Cup, which culminated in fitting fashion with Algeria defeating Tunisia in extra time in the final.

There were some question marks about the heat and climate in Qatar but the Arab Cup has shown that those concerns can be done away with. All the matches were played at the same time the World Cup next year is set to be held and the temperatures were cool around the venues, especially for the evening matches.

And in the event the temperatures are higher during the day games, there is always the Advanced Cooling Tech which is present in seven of the eight venues for the World Cup.

The Arab Cup also saw fans attending multiple matches during a day, something that Qatar has proclaimed as unique for the 2022 World Cup. Some dignitaries even attended four games in a day during the Arab Cup.

There were fans who used the Doha metro to travel from one stadium to another with ease and catch multiple matches on the same day. And this could be a template for fans from all over the world to follow when they fly down to Qatar for the 2022 World Cup.

A World Cup is always special. It throws up moments of glory that go down eternally into history books. The 2022 World Cup, by the look of things, will also be special and maybe historic. For after all, Qatar look set to ‘Deliver Amazing’ at a tournament that will also be the first truly global event involving fans since the pandemic hit.