The 22nd edition of the World Cup soccer tournament starts on Sunday in Qatar, knowing that it is the first time that an Arab country hosts the most attractive sports event all over the globe.
According to media reports, the next editions of the World Cup will witness increasing the number of competing teams from 32 to 48 teams, and the event will be hosted in three nations instead of concentrating it in one country.
Crisis-hit Lebanese People Deprived from Watching Matches
The Lebanese people suffering from an unprecedented economic crisis will not be able to watch the World Cup matches simply because the agreement with the broadcaster has not been concluded yet.
The caretaker information minister Ziad Makary said that the council of ministers cannot constitutionally convene in order to approve the required payment to Bein Sports.
Meanwhile, the restaurants and cafes will be the only solution for the Lebanese to watch the games, who deteriorating living conditions prevent them from paying for the satellite services required by the broadcaster.
The average cost of the satellite services needed to watch the World Cup matches is 100$, while the minimum wage rate in Lebanon is less than 50$, which makes it impossible for most of the Lebanese people to obtain this “privilege”.
World Leaders Descend on Qatar for World Cup kickoff
World leaders, politicians, diplomats and royalty have begun to arrive in Qatar before the World Cup kicks off on Sunday.
Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres arrived in Doha on Saturday, followed by Rwandan President Paul Kagame, who was spotted at Hamad International Airport on Sunday, Qatar News Agency reported.
Saudi Arabia Crown Mohammad bin Salman also touched down in the host nation late on Saturday before Sunday evening’s opening match between Qatar and Ecuador.
Bin Salman’s arrival in Qatar comes after Saudi Arabia and Doha resumed diplomatic ties in January 2021 following years of frosty relations.
Saudi Arabia, playing in Group C, will take on Argentina on November 22.
Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi will also attend the opening ceremony, Egyptian state TV quoted the presidency as saying on Sunday.
Those not attending in person have sent messages of support.
On Friday, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Qatar’s emir, received a call from Russian President Vladimir Putin. He called the emir’s office to congratulate the host country and wish the Qatari national team success in their coming games.
The official opening ceremony is slated to kick off at Al Bayt Stadium at 5pm (14:00 GMT) on Sunday before the inaugural Qatar-Ecuador match at 7pm (16:00 GMT).
The emir’s office said the opening event will be attended by “a number of Their Majesties, Highnesses, and Excellencies Heads of States and Heads of Delegations of brotherly and friendly countries”.
Source: Al-Manar English Website and other websites