World Cup: Qatar Bans Beer Sales At Stadiums As Ronaldo Jets In
Written by City Radio on November 18, 2022
World Cup chiefs on Friday banned beer sales around stadiums in a stunning U-turn just two days before kickoff as Cristiano Ronaldo prepared to jet in to Qatar.
Alcohol is largely prohibited in the Islamic nation but the organisers sparked anger from fans with their dramatic decision.
Football’s world governing body FIFA said beer would not be sold to fans around any of the eight World Cup stadiums following discussions with the hosts.
Dozens of Budweiser beer tents had already been set up at grounds ahead of the first game on Sunday between Qatar and Ecuador.
The host nation has predicted that more than one million fans will visit the country for the 29-day tournament and FIFA has had a longstanding sponsorship deal with Budweiser, which is owned by drinks giant AB InBev.
Beer will remain available in VIP suites in stadiums, in some fan zones and in some hotel and restaurant bars.
The Football Supporters’ Association, which represents fans from England and Wales, criticised the move, saying it was symptomatic of a “total lack of communication” with supporters from the organisers.
Ronaldo is set to become the latest global superstar to land in Qatar after his explosive tirade against his club Manchester United.
The Portugal forward, who has dominated global football for the past 15 years alongside Argentina’s Lionel Messi, will be playing in his fifth and likely final World Cup.
The 37-year-old, who has a world-record 117 international goals, is aiming to become the first man to score in five World Cups.
But his arrival in Doha will be overshadowed by an astonishing outburst against United, in which he said he felt “betrayed” by the club and had no respect for manager Erik ten Hag.
The forward, who has more than 800 goals for club and country, appears headed for the Old Trafford exit door but will be desperate to show potential suitors he can still deliver on the biggest stage.