World Cup qualifiers.. a message from FIFA regarding the Cameroon-Algeria match

Thousands of migrant workers, many of whom were involved in building new stadiums, stood in long queues to watch the soccer World Cup on display in Doha, months before Qatar hosts the first World Cup in the Middle East and the Arab world.

Although residents are given discounted ticket prices, most of them will not be able to watch the World Cup matches due to the high prices, so some of them waited for about two hours to take a picture next to the famous Gold Cup that will be awarded to the winner on December 18.

General view showing the original World Cup trophy on display in Doha, Qatar

South Asian workers contributed greatly to the construction of seven new stadiums out of eight, in addition to facilities and infrastructure to host the major global event held once every four years.

Rights groups accuse Qatar of exploiting foreign workers, especially those working in facilities and stadiums for the World Cup. Qatar has repeatedly denied the accusations and announced several reforms since its controversial choice in 2010 to organize the finals.

An Indian family poses for pictures next to the original World Cup

An Indian family poses for pictures next to the original World Cup

In the most recent stage of the final show in Qatar ahead of the finals that kicks off on November 21, the trophy was placed in a car park near Doha’s main cricket stadium.

Each person had about 15 seconds to take a quick photo with the trophy, which the French national team has held since 2018 in Russia.

Workers waiting their turn to take souvenir photos

Workers waiting their turn to take souvenir photos

Pop bands from Bangladesh and drummers from India entertained queues.

People standing next to the original trophy displayed in the Qatari capital, Doha

People standing next to the original trophy displayed in the Qatari capital, Doha

Azzam Rashid, a carpenter who worked in two stadiums, said he was among the many workers who were unable to buy tickets, but the cup aroused their curiosity. “Tickets may be expensive, but Qatar and the World Cup gave me the opportunity.”

He continued, “The queues are long, but seeing the trophy is worth it.”

Some tickets are worth 40 Qatari riyals ($11) and are allocated to the 2.8 million residents, most of whom are foreign workers.

Many told AFP that cheap tickets had disappeared and that other tickets were out of hand for workers earning the $275 minimum wage.

A woman standing next to the original version of the World Cup

A woman standing next to the original version of the World Cup

“The World Cup is exciting, but it’s definitely beyond my ability,” said an administrative employee, who gave his name as Tarrer, while another immigrant named Nassim revealed his luck with some tickets worth about $ 10, “Everyone can afford the price I spent.”

The event attracted tens of thousands of visitors

The event attracted tens of thousands of visitors

But construction worker Ahmed Karim, who said he had been in Qatar for ten years, expected most migrants to attend matches on television. “The cup is a big event for us, and it is the closest most of us will get to it.”