Qatar is this small country in South West Asia (Middle-East), near Bahrain and Saudi Arabia. Qatar is famous to be the world’s richest country by inhabitant and has the highest average wage in the world. The richness of the country is mainly due to petrol. The past few years, Qatar wanted to expand their revenues and starting to invest in many different places: London (It is said that nearly 20% of London Stock Exchange is controlled by Qatari), Paris, New-York…
Qatar uses its money to buy the world and they also tried for few years to buy sports and sport results. They for example bought the Paris Saint-Germain football team and made some unclear sponsorships with the team in order to make them win the Champions’ League in the following 5 years. Their biggest ‘coup’ was when they bribed the Fifa members and bought the organisation of the Football World Cup. As you probably know the Fifa World cup will be in Qatar in 2022. For your information: the country is currently using many Indian slaves to build the stadiums.
First, the team of Qatar was composed with only 2 persons born in Qatar. The majority of the players were Spanish, Cuban, Iranian, French, Bosnian… Those professional players were paid around 1,000,000 US$ (30 Million NT$) in order to take the Qatari citizenship and accept to play for the local team. Handball is a professional game but is not as popular as football or basketball: no handball player in the world makes that kind of money.
Second, before the finals, national teams were divided into groups. Groups were chosen randomly except for Qatar. The country gave itself the right to choose the group they were going to (Obviously the weakest one).
Third, Qatar supporters were not even real supporters. Indeed, Qatar government was paying all-inclusive holidays to Europeans if they came to support the Qatar National Team. Therefore, it was not rare to hear ‘Come on Qatar’ with a British accent or ‘Vamos Qatar’ which mean ‘Come on Qatar’ in Spanish.
Fourth, referees were paid large amount of money and gave ridiculous decisions in every match. The decisions were always in favor of the host country. This happened against Brazil, Austria, Germany, Poland and France for example. At the end of the match Qatar-Poland, the audience was applauding the referee and not the players. The cheating worked until the Finale, when France won its 5th World Champion title making it the best Handball Country of history.
You now have all the elements and you can judge by yourself if you think Qatar played fairly or cheated. Let’s see what will Qatar do in the football World Cup. How many people will actually be Qatari and how good the referees will be. Get ready for a fair competition.
Author: Ms. Chouetty, Johanna.