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A “presidential” presence, a wonderful conclusion, and international praise for the first “Middle East” World Cup

Macron supported the roosters from the stands…and his Argentine counterpart abstained for fear of a “bad omen.”

Yesterday, the world bid farewell to the first “Middle Eastern” World Cup, with a wonderful closing ceremony attended by nearly 80,000 fans at Lusail Shahd Stadium, in a varied artistic evening, punctuated by a musical combination of the official songs of the tournament, which were presented directly in front of the fans in the stadium in the presence of a group of singers in the presence of Amir Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, French President Emmanuel Macron, and heads of state. While Argentine President Alberto Fernandez watched the final match from his home so that it would not be a bad omen for Lionel Messi and the rest of the players.

And the Argentine presidents preferred to stay away from the stadiums since the Argentine national team lost 1-0 to Cameroon at the start of the 1990 championship in the presence of then-Argentine President Carlos Menem.

The Emir of Qatar in an interview with the Swedish player Ibrahimovic, and it appears that the French President Macron and the President of FIFA (AFP)

Fernandez wrote a tweet saying: “Like millions of my countrymen, I will enjoy watching the World Cup Final from home.”

He added, “I will live the wonderful moments, as I have done so far, with my people. On the field we will be at our best and in the stands we will have great fans.” He emphasized, “The myth remains a myth.”

Fernandez said he was in contact with French President Emmanuel Macron, who will be at Lusail Stadium to watch the match.

Fernandez wrote another tweet to Macron, in which he said: “Dear friend, I appreciate you very much, and I wish you the best in the future. Except for today (Sunday). Argentina is my beautiful country.

Davido and Aisha performed the song “Come on, come on”, while the artists Ozuna and James presented the song “Welcome”, in addition to the women’s team consisting of Noura Fatehi, Balqis, Rahima Riad and Manal Al Kamel, who performed the song “Light the Sky”.

The closing ceremony also witnessed the dancers swaying to the music, amidst a state of interaction and enthusiasm in the stands.

Giant World Cup model during the closing ceremony (Reuters)

Two balloons in the colors of the Argentine and French flags were launched into the open air before the closing ceremony.

For his part, Englishman David Beckham praised the Qatar 2022 World Cup for uniting the fans, and pointed out that holding the tournament in the middle of the season raised the level of football.

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Beckham praised what the tournament showed on the field, and attributed this to the fact that the tournament was held in the middle of the season, which allowed the players to be at their best levels.

Beckham said: «Seeing the fans together and the level of football, it was all wonderful. It was a pleasure to see the excitement and fun the fans had.”

“The level of football was amazing,” he added. I have always been an advocate of holding the World Cup in the middle of the season, because I know the players will be active, and the level of energy and physical ability will be high.

England’s campaign ended in the quarter-finals after losing to France, the defending champion, in a match that saw Harry Kane score from a penalty kick and miss another kick.

The period of not crowning the English national team with any major tournament will continue for 58 years until Euro 2024, and yet Gareth Southgate will continue to lead the team during the period after he preferred to stay.

Because of the encouraging performance of the England national team in Qatar, Beckham believes that their experience in the tournament will benefit them in Euro 2024 in Germany.

He said, “We have real quality and the English players will take this experience in the next tournament. The fans are behind us, the future looks bright.

And he added, “We have many young players who will learn from this and take it with them in the Euros and the next World Cup.”

It is noteworthy that Qatar received more than one million and 400 thousand visitors from all over the world during the World Cup, which started on November 20 and ended yesterday with the final match between Argentina and France.

The total number of fans attending the championship matches was approximately 3.4 million fans, which means that the average attendance for one match exceeded 53 thousand fans, with a total capacity of more than 96 percent.

The Qatari Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy said in a statement: “The fans enjoyed the close-distance nature of the tournament, as thousands were able to attend more than one match in one day during the first stages of the tournament competitions, for the first time in the modern history of the World Cup, thanks to the close distances between the eight stadiums.” All of them are within an hour’s drive from downtown Doha and can be easily reached using the metro, buses or taxis.”

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The same source added, “The entertainment activities, which were held in an atmosphere suitable for all family members, were very popular, as more than 530,000 people attended various activities daily during the days of the tournament, at the FIFA Fan Festival in Al Bidda Park, and the areas surrounding the stadiums, and on the Doha Corniche and in other areas.” fans across the country.

Hassan Al-Thawadi, Secretary General of the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy and President of the Qatar World Cup 2022, said: “We pledged to the world in 2010 to host an impressive version of the World Cup, and indeed we organized an exceptional, impressive version of the tournament, which will represent a milestone in hosting major international events.”

Al-Thawadi added, “We have received wide praise and very positive opinions from all partners, fans, players, media, volunteers, and tournament officials. The smooth and comfortable mobility experience contributed to ease of movement and access to the World Cup stadiums, the most prominent tourist attractions, accommodation and event areas, and everyone enjoyed the festive atmosphere that was launched on the occasion of hosting the World Championship with a package of activities and entertainment shows that covered the country. There is no doubt that the historic event will leave a sustainable social, economic and environmental legacy for the country and the entire region.

The FIFA World Cup 2022 in Al Bidda Park also attracted more than 1.8 million fans who enjoyed live broadcasts of the matches and entertainment provided by the venue.

The FIFA Fan Festival, which opened on November 19, was a destination for foreign and local fans during the tournament, as all World Cup matches were shown on a giant screen with a length of 1800 meters, in addition to free entertainment that witnessed the participation of some well-known names in the world of world music, such as Diplo, Maluma and Keys. Danielle, Noura Fatehi, Trindade Cardona, and Calvin Harris.

Mayad Al-Emadi, Director of the FIFA Fan Festival, said: “After years of hard work, we are pleased to see passionate football fans from all over the world attending the FIFA Fan Festival to celebrate football.”

She added, “Bridging the gap between East and West is an important part of the legacy of organizing the first World Cup in the Middle East and the Arab world. The Fan Fest has played a huge role in this noble mission. I want to thank the wonderful groups that I have worked with and who have done a tremendous job over the past years, as they came together to make this wonderful project a success. Our success would not have been without the hard work they put in.”

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Gerden Lindhout, Head of Marketing and Experimental Promotion at FIFA, said: “The FIFA Fan Fest has proven to be the soul of the tournament, bringing together millions of fans from all over the world to share and express their passion for the beautiful game. It was the perfect party to complement the greatest show on earth: the World Cup.”

The venue, which has an area of ​​145,000 square meters and 40, has received nearly 70,000 visitors per day, with the participation of 146 musical artists who have provided 162 hours of music live, and more than 700,000 drinks have been sold throughout the tournament. Fans from all over the world have experienced all the moments that this wonderful festival has to offer.

In this context, Slim Ghana said: “It is the fifth time that I visit the FIFA Fan Festival and I love it! I try to come whenever I can to watch the matches and enjoy the great music and food too. I really like meeting fans from all over the world which is what made us here thanks to this amazing venue. It is truly a unique experience, and perhaps the best World Cup ever.

And Irina, who is a fan of the French national team, expressed her enthusiasm to share the experience with new friends, saying: “I really love partying with other fans, hugging them and cheering them on – and the FIFA Fan Fest is the perfect place to do that; You meet people from all over the world, watch matches and dance with other fans. It’s a great experience.”

As for the Argentine fans, Federico and Luciana, who are 33 and 29 years old respectively, they have been in Doha since the start of the tournament, where they attended all matches of the Argentine national team and visited the FIFA Fan Festival several times during their stay in the Qatari capital, not only for the sake of football. “It was great to meet fans from Saudi Arabia, Morocco and Mexico and watch the matches,” they said. The atmosphere was great and it’s amazing seeing everyone enjoying the atmosphere together.”

In turn, the 35-year-old, who is attending with his wife, father and a two-month-old baby, emphasized the family atmosphere offered by this place, as he said: “The organization is really good and the place welcomes families.”