World Cup fans are caught in a “desert storm” in Doha over housing, alcohol and overcrowding disputes

England and Wales fans landed in Qatar yesterday amid a “desert storm” of clashes over shelter, alcohol and overcrowding.

Fans were greeted by searing temperatures of 34°C (93°F) in the capital, Doha, which is hosting the first World Cup to be held in a Middle Eastern country.

As the world’s greatest football show kicks off this afternoon, Qatar’s rulers were already in damage control mode when fans first began uploading footage of “hellish” conditions in the residential villages.

There were also complaints that security guards were being overly aggressive, with one fan telling The Mail on Sunday he was cornered and accused of “spying” as he walked to his holiday home.

FIFA President Gianni Infantino addresses the opening match of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022

FIFA President Gianni Infantino addresses the opening match of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022

FIFA President Gianni Infantino addresses the opening match of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022

Sam, 33, from Reading, was left devastated by the ‘hit and run’ incident in which his mobile phone was knocked out of his hand by three security guards as he walked along while video calling his family.

The England fan, who declined to give his last name for fear of being targeted by strict Qatari authorities, said: “I don’t scare easily but their behavior was totally unnecessary. It left me shaken.’

Many fans continue to vent their anger after the Gulf nation’s sheikhs imposed a surprise last-minute beer ban in stadiums.

Yesterday the much-touted Fan Festival site opened – but fans had to queue for two hours to get inside, with no access to shelter or water in the scorching heat.

England begin their World Cup battle against Iran tomorrow at 16:00 (13:00 UK time).

Wales – in the tournament for the first time since 1958 – play USA at 10pm (7pm UK time).

Both home nations are in Group B, meaning they will face off in a derby later in the month, with the Prince of Wales – a staunch England supporter – among the remaining clashes.

FIFA President Gianni Infantino

FIFA President Gianni Infantino

FIFA President Gianni Infantino

FIFA President Gianni Infantino

It is by far the most expensive World Cup ever hosted, with Qatar pouring a staggering £185 billion into building stadiums and infrastructure over the 12 years

It's the fans who will feel the pinch, with exorbitantly cheap accommodation and beers costing a sobering £12 for less than a pint in the few places that are allowed to sell alcohol

It's the fans who will feel the pinch, with exorbitantly cheap accommodation and beers costing a sobering £12 for less than a pint in the few places that are allowed to sell alcohol

It’s the fans who will feel the pinch, with exorbitantly cheap accommodation and beers costing a sobering £12 for less than a pint in the few places that are allowed to sell alcohol

It is by far the most expensive World Cup ever hosted, as Qatar has poured a staggering £185 billion into building stadiums and infrastructure in the 12 years since it was controversially crowned football’s poster child.

But it’s fans who will feel the pinch, with exorbitantly expensive accommodation and beers costing a sobering £12 for less than a pint in the few places that are allowed to sell alcohol.

And footage and images on social media appeared to show piles of rubble and industrial machinery at the Rawdat Al Jahhaniya fan village, west of Doha, which will host thousands of England and Wales fans. Despite being billed at £185 a night as a cheaper alternative to expensive hotels, some fans have likened it to a “quarantine camp” or detention center.

In the colorful huts of the Cabins Free Zone fan village near the international airport, the first British guests complained that the cabins were hell, with stop-start air conditioning, smoke detectors beeping constantly and generators noisy.

Yesterday the much-touted Fan Festival site opened - but fans had to queue for two hours to get inside, with no access to shelter or water in the scorching heat

Yesterday the much-touted Fan Festival site opened - but fans had to queue for two hours to get inside, with no access to shelter or water in the scorching heat

Yesterday the much-touted Fan Festival site opened – but fans had to queue for two hours to get inside, with no access to shelter or water in the scorching heat

The already tense World Cup – the first in a Muslim country – has pitted the traditional trappings of football against the hosts’ conservative interpretation of Islam.

With vaping bans, public displays of love, alcohol and swearing – all of which can lead to arrest – British police “peacekeepers” have arrived in Qatar to “calm down” boisterous supporters.

Around 3,000-5,000 England fans are expected for the group stage, with numbers set to increase as the Three Lions advance.

Between 2,000 and 3,000 Wales supporters are expected, while both sides could be bolstered by expats in the region.

Source: | This article originally belongs to Dailymail.co.uk

https://www.soundhealthandlastingwealth.com/health-news/world-cup-fans-are-in-a-desert-storm-of-rows-over-accommodation-alcohol-and-overcrowding-in-doha/ World Cup fans are caught in a “desert storm” in Doha over housing, alcohol and overcrowding disputes

Brian Ashcraft

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