Qatar Welcomes the World Cup


Payton Mucker

Holding a soccer ball in swing choir, sophomore Lewis Garcia is one of the many students who have enjoyed the World Cup the last few weeks. Students have been watching games on their phones in class and while walking around the hallways.

Players worldwide gather in one place every four years to play and represent their countries for the chance to become the world champion in soccer and win the World Cup, which only eight countries have won, proving how difficult it is to win a World Cup. However, this one has been controversial

Qatar, by far, has spent the most amount of money of any World Cup host. Qatar has reportedly spent over $200 billion to host the 2022 World Cup, the most expensive since Brazil in 2014, which spent $14.5 billion. 

When Qatar was picked to be the host country for the World Cup in 2010, concerns were brought up about hosting the World Cup in a country known for high temperatures in the summer. Ultimately, FIFA delayed the tournament to the winter, but players were upset about hosting the tournament during the middle of the club season. 

Players like Balon D’or winner Karim Benzema, the striker from Real Madrid, who was injured during a training session with his club team, could not recover in time to join his national team at the tournament.

“Qatar is a mistake,” former FIFA president Sepp Blatter said. “It was a bad choice, and I was responsible for it as the president at the time”

Six thousand five hundred migrant workers were killed building stadiums that will host the soccer matches, the most of any World Cup. Not only did Qatar put the lives of its people on the line but also banned members of the LGBTQ+ community from entering the country.

“I think we should respect their rules and their religion,” sophomore Lewis Garcia said. “If you are in a country, you should obviously follow their rules and laws because it’s their country and they can decide whatever they want to.”

Although this World Cup has been controversial, many will see the stars they have watched since they were kids play in the tournament for the last time. This will be the final World Cup for several soccer players, most notably the two players thought by some to be the greatest of all time, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, both of them trying to win the trophy that has alluded them their whole careers.

“It’s very difficult to decide who is better. They are both considered the greatest of all time,” Garcia said. “Both are amazing players. I cannot decide who is better than the other.”

The rivalry between Messi and Ronaldo has gone back since they first met each other in the Champions League semi-finals.

“I personally like Messi a lot more than Ronaldo,” sophomore Jesus Ramirez said. “Ronaldo just has those funny little viral clips online. But, in terms of gameplay, I love watching Messi play way more.”

Mexico, Canada, and the United States will be hosting the next World Cup in 2026. It will be the first time three different countries will host together.

“I would love to go to a World Cup one day. It would be a dream come true,” Garcia said. “Maybe in the next world Cup in 2026, I can go. I may have an opportunity of attending it.”