Alternative World Cup

  Although the 22nd FIFA World Cup, which has lasted for nearly a month, has just opened, it can be concluded even before the start that this is the most unusual game since the World Cup was founded 92 years ago.
  This kind of alternative is not only reflected in the fact that the World Cup is held in a Middle Eastern country for the first time, and the host is Qatar, which has never entered the World Cup, but also in and out of the field. For example, who would have thought that the Italian team, the four-time World Cup champion and still among the top teams in the world, failed to qualify for the World Cup for two consecutive years? Another example is Wales entering the World Cup again after 64 years.
  On November 20, local time, the opening game of the 22nd World Cup once again provided an explanation for the “alternative” of this World Cup-the host, the 2019 Asian Cup champion Qatar, lost 0-2 to Ecuador. In the 92 years since the World Cup was founded, the host nation’s unbeaten record in the opening game has been broken.
  It can be predicted that the records of the World Cup will be continuously broken. Regardless of whether there will be a new team in this World Cup to win the Hercules Cup and enter the championship lineage, at least in the future, more and more teams will participate in the World Cup. The reason is that The World Cup with 32 teams participating in the main match is coming to an end. In 2026, the World Cup will be expanded to 48 teams. Such a large-scale competition is jointly organized by the United States, Canada, and Mexico. In the Qatar World Cup, among the four teams that broke out from the North American and Galle competition areas, in addition to the Costa Rica team, the other three were the teams from the United States, Canada, and Mexico.
  Qatar, Canada, as well as former teams such as the United States and Japan, have grown in strength in recent years, and Italy’s failure to qualify for the World Cup. What enlightenment should Chinese football have?
Looking at Qatar from Multiple Perspectives

  12 years ago, around winter——December 2, 2010, at the Zurich Convention and Exhibition Center in Switzerland, after four rounds of voting, the then President of FIFA Blatter announced that the right to host the 22nd FIFA World Cup in 2022 will be decided by obtained by Qatar.
  Although Qatar had been leading the way in the votes from the first round, many people still couldn’t believe their eyes and ears until the final announcement of Qatar’s victory.
  These are the countries competing with Qatar for the right to host the 2022 World Cup – Australia, South Korea, Japan, the United States. Among them, the United States, Japan, and South Korea have all hosted the World Cup. Whether the World Cup has been held is of course not the main point of investigation for the competition of the host country of the World Cup. However, it must also be noted that the level of football development in these three countries and Australia was higher than that of Qatar at that time. At that time, the Qatar team hadn’t even achieved any decent results in the Asian Cup, and it had never entered the World Cup. Of course, the Qatar team, which has participated in intercontinental competitions since the 1970s, has gradually become the “spoiler” of the Asian competition. As early as in the 1997 World Cup Asian qualifiers, the Chinese men’s football team, head coached by Qi Wusheng, lost 2-3 to Qatar at home in Dalian. The Chinese team can enter the 2002 World Cup in Japan and South Korea. Among them, the national football team led by Milutinovic scored 4 points against Qatar in the top ten match.
  Although they failed to enter the World Cup in Japan and South Korea, the Qataris began to feel the charm of football. They not only hoped to improve the performance of the national team, but also began to use their brains to bid for the World Cup. When Qatar successfully won the right to host the World Cup in 2010, several of its major competitors were of course unconvinced—why is it Qatar?
  Later data showed that Qatar was determined to win the 22nd World Cup. The cost of bidding, publicity and lobbying alone is no less than 200 million US dollars, which is still a certain degree of incomplete statistics-after all, there are still many funds that cannot be tracked and clarified. Australia spent US$42 million on the bidding fee, and the United States only spent US$5 million.
  Since then, despite the deep fermentation of the FIFA corruption scandal in 2015, high-level earthquakes, and Blatter’s lightning resignation, Qatar will continue to host the 22nd World Cup, which has become the consensus of the international football community and has been awarded by the new FIFA. Union leadership support. Until November 19, the current FIFA president Infantino, who has already rushed to Qatar, once again supported this desert peninsula country in the Persian Gulf to host the World Cup. “In what age, Europeans are still teaching others ideological and moral lessons? Today, I feel like a Qatari, an Arab, an African, a disabled person, and a laborer covered in dirt.” The reason why Fantino said this is because until the European teams arrived in Qatar one by one, some Western “human rights organizations” and media were still talking about Qatar’s hosting of the game. A so-called “human rights organization” headquartered in London, England released a 75-page report in early November, talking about Qatar’s massive use of immigrant labor in order to build World Cup stadiums. There was also talk of the long hours and harsh conditions these workers were subject to discrimination, wage theft and other abuse. Some Western media pointed their finger at the Qatari government, claiming that these immigrant workers were exploited in order to hold the World Cup in a hurry.

On November 20th, the opening ceremony of the 2022 Qatar World Cup, Korean singers and Qatari singers sang the theme song together.

  No matter how you look at Qatar, there is one fact that cannot be ignored – during the World Cup, Turkey has dispatched more than 3,000 riot police, 100 special police, 50 riot experts, several coordinators and even nearly 100 well-trained police dogs Go to Qatar to assist with security. The reason is that Qatar does lack human resources.
  As a European who was born in Italy and grew up in Switzerland, Infantino switched automatically in English, French, Italian and Spanish at the press conference, and told reporters from various countries: “We have learned from some Europeans and the Western world. A lot of lessons. I think we Europeans have to apologize for what we have done in the past 3,000 years and in the next 3,000 years before teaching others moral lessons.” Then, Infantino said that he is not a Qatari, Not a real Arab, not a real African…but I feel the same about being discriminated against and being bullied in a foreign country. The reason is that when I was a child in Switzerland, I was an Italian kid with red hair and freckles. “Imagine that scene!” Infantino said, “Then what should we do? Should we try to integrate into the local area and make friends with them, instead of blaming, insulting and fighting each other, but understanding each other? We should do it.”
  Maybe after 12 years, people from all over the world look at Qatar from their own perspectives, and they may not necessarily agree that Qatar can become the center of world football, but when November 20, 2022, the 22nd World Cup opens When the ceremony was held at the Gulf Stadium in Qatar, when former France star Desailly escorted the Hercules Cup into the stadium, when the famous actor Morgan Freeman and the 2022 FIFA World Cup ambassador Ghanim Al Mu The world was still in World Cup time when he shared the Qatari vision together.

  When Korean idol group BTS member Jungkook sang “Dreamer” with Qatari singer Farhad Al-Kubaisi, Qatar created an “unprecedented, Olympic-like World Cup,” as the opening ceremony’s creative director Baliqi said. Opening Ceremony”.
what is Qatar like

  Indeed, Qatar’s desire to host the World Cup cannot be accomplished with the efforts of the whole country. This peninsula country, located in the middle of the west coast of the Persian Gulf, is rich in oil, with a per capita gross domestic product (GDP) of 132,000 US dollars, equivalent to nearly 900,000 yuan, and currently ranks first in the world. But its total area is only 11,500 square kilometers, about a little smaller than China’s Tianjin city. And the vast majority of places in Qatar are rocky Gobi except for the desert. There’s also the issue of climate—there’s only two seasons here, winter and summer, all year round. Summer heat – temperatures can reach as high as 46°C, not at all suitable for football matches.
  To host a tournament in Qatar – you’ll have to build stadiums in the desert, or even build cities from scratch; you’ll have to build transport infrastructure to connect cities and places within them; , or even so, have to install air conditioning in the new stadium. The reality is that Qatar has a total population of 2.658 million, of which only 15% are Qatari citizens. The rest of the population is mainly from India, Pakistan and Southeast Asian countries – themselves foreign workers. With such a resource endowment, why does Qatar host the World Cup? Of course, it ranks third in the world after Russia and Iran in terms of natural gas resources, and ranks fourteenth in the world in terms of crude oil reserves. At the same time, it should also be noted that Qatar’s helium reserves rank second in the world! Because of the discovery of oil after independence from the British colonial rule, Qatar gradually discovered these natural resources, and only then did it have opportunities for further development. Only then did Doha, an international metropolis as famous as Dubai, the United Arab Emirates, and the internationally renowned peninsula. Media such as TV stations also have the ability to host the World Cup in the desert.
  Until the start of the 2022 World Cup, there is no official final figure on the cost of hosting the World Cup in Qatar, but some Qatari officials revealed clues in interviews. Qatari Finance Ministry officials revealed in an interview that over the years, Qatar has spent 500 million U.S. dollars a week on infrastructure construction for the World Cup; The initial cost is around $200 billion. At present, the figure commonly quoted by many media and analysis agencies around the world is that Qatar has spent more than 220 billion US dollars to host this World Cup.
  Another data disclosure: for this World Cup, Qatar has built 7 new stadiums and renovated an existing stadium, with related costs as high as 6.5 billion US dollars. The rest of the spending is mainly on transportation, hotels, telecommunications and security infrastructure. This time Qatar waved its hand and spent huge sums of money to build a subway system, a new airport, a large number of roads and more than 100 hotels in the Doha area.
  Also because of strong financial resources, coupled with suitable concepts and measures, Qatari football has gradually become stronger and participated in international competitions. Its move to recruit naturalized players is not a temporary idea for hosting the World Cup. As early as 2006, Sebastian Soria from Uruguay was naturalized in Qatar and joined the Qatar team. This tall center, born in Paisandu, Uruguay and born out of the Spanish Real Madrid youth training Castilla team, scored a lore goal at the Tianjin “Water Drop” Stadium in the Asian qualifiers for the World Cup in 2008. It directly announced that the Chinese team missed the World Cup in South Africa. At that time, Qatar had not formally bid to host the World Cup.
  Seeing the World Cup in South Africa, the host South African team became the first host in history not to qualify from the group stage. Qatar still has the courage to bid for the 22nd World Cup. Its successful bid has created history—it has become the country that has never participated in the World Cup and has won the right to host the World Cup. So, is it a luxury for Qatar to qualify from the group and even achieve good results? From the perspective of boosting the morale of the Qatar team, the Qatar team certainly has hope. Looking back at the last World Cup hosted by an Asian country—the 2002 Korea-Japan World Cup, both hosts achieved good rankings—the Japanese team advanced to the top 16 and finally ranked ninth; even if there were various controversies, especially against Italy There was a lot of controversy in the eight-to-four battle, and the South Korean team entered the semi-finals of the World Cup anyway. However, compared with South Korea, an old strong team in Asia, and the Japanese team, which has grown rapidly since the 1990s by developing domestic professional leagues and encouraging young people to study abroad, Qatar’s football foundation is too weak. How to improve the level of the national team in a short period of time? Qatar has chosen a football development path that suits its own national conditions. On the one hand, it continues to spend a lot of money and run the Interstellar League; on the other hand, it strengthens the youth training with Qatar characteristics.

Qatar World Cup, spectators scan the green code to enter.

  As early as 2003, the Qatar Football Association organized the “Qatar Elite Academy”, and in 2006 created the “Elite Academy Dream Program”. The program is all implemented by high-level youth training experts from Europe, starting from young people. When Qatar successfully bid to host the World Cup in 2010, Spanish coach Sanchez from the elite academy took over the Qatar team in the 1995 age group, gradually digging out the first batch of Qatari “local elites” such as Afef and Moise. In 2012, Elite College launched another project called “HOPE Project (Hope Project)”. Let these players in the 1995 age group disperse to the echelons of multiple professional clubs in Europe, and follow the players of the same age in these European professional clubs to train and compete. At the same time, once a month, the whole team will participate in the warm-up competition. In order to prepare for the 22nd World Cup, the Qatar team even chose to participate in the European qualifiers. Of course, for the European teams, the match against Qatar is mainly to “accompany the prince to study”, and it is not regarded as an encounter that counts points and determines fate. As a member of the AFC, Qatar’s national team has participated in the America’s Cup, North American and Caribbean Gold Cup and other intercontinental competitions of other continental football federations more than once. Of course, it has to be said that the AFC has played a very important role in the cross-continental competition of the Qatar team. At the beginning, when the AFC signed cooperation agreements with the South American Football Confederation and the Central and North American and Caribbean Football Federations, they all had plans to invite teams across continents to participate, and the Qatar Football Association undoubtedly became the biggest beneficiary. Of course, the Qatar Football Association reciprocated the AFC and took the initiative to undertake some events. Especially under the epidemic, Qatar stepped forward to undertake some important events to reduce the burden on the AFC.

  Until the start of the 2022 World Cup, there is no official final figure on the cost of hosting the World Cup in Qatar, but some Qatari officials revealed clues in interviews.

  When the Qatar national team won the Asian Cup in 2019, who can say that the Qatar team will not be able to qualify from the 22nd World Cup group stage or even achieve better results? After all, relying on the advantage of the host, Qatar, in the name of the first-tier team, was drawn in the same group as Ecuador and Senegal, and it seems that it is not a dream to enter the top 16.

On February 1, 2019, in Abu Dhabi, UAE, Qatar defeated Japan to win the Asian Cup.

  Of course, Qatar’s 0-2 loss in the first game against Ecuador seems to indicate that the Qatar football team’s first World Cup trip will not exceed three games, but for the country of Qatar, football will continue to develop – 2023 Asia The World Cup will be held in Qatar, which is the most obvious example. And the infrastructure built to host the World Cup has already changed the face of this tiny peninsula on the Persian Gulf. Hassan Al-Sawadi, secretary-general of the Qatar World Cup Delivery and Inheritance Supreme Committee, said that hosting the World Cup is a big account. “The cost of more than 200 billion US dollars reported by the media involves all infrastructure projects and their development in Qatar. It is not just built for the World Cup. Many facilities will still be used for a long time after the World Cup.” He once held the 15th Asian Games, World Trade Qatar, which organizes conferences, the United Nations Climate Conference and many other international events and conferences, can no longer retreat to a corner of the world.
  Some commentators believe that an event watched by billions of people around the world is the best advertisement for the host. In the long run, it may help promote tourism, foreign trade and investment, etc.
The football industry adapts to the game

  Because of Qatar’s unique climate characteristics, the 22nd World Cup had to be held from November to December. This poses a big problem for some football powerhouses in Europe and South America, especially countries and regions with developed professional leagues-you know, the seasons of the five major European leagues are all multi-year leagues. Especially from November to mid-to-early December every year, when the clubs compete vigorously after the start of the league for a year-the championship team strives to be in the half-time championship before Christmas in the first half of the season, at least ranking near the top. We must not lose hope of winning the championship, even if the ranking is not ideal for the time being, they also hope to keep their qualifications for winning the Champions League; relegation teams also hope to get more points. No matter what kind of team, they want to bite their direct opponents as much as possible in the first half, and then make adjustments during the opening of the winter transfer window. As for the English league, etc., due to the large scale of the league and the large number of participating teams, the competition in the Christmas season is extremely fierce. From the perspective of a professional coach, he will definitely carry out work such as physical reserve and pre-season tactical running-in during the season preparation period in summer every year. However, competitions such as the World Cup, European Cup, and America’s Cup are held after the end of the season in most countries and before the start of the preparation period for the new season. The impact on professional leagues in various countries is not that great. It is also because the World Cup has become a stage for the national football teams of various countries to show their strength, which has also led to the gathering of scouts in the stands.

  An event watched by billions of people around the world is the best advertisement for the host. In the long run, it may help promote tourism, foreign trade and investment, etc.

On November 20, 2022, the opening match of the 2022 World Cup was held in Doha. The host Qatar lost 0-2 to Ecuador.

  Thinking back to the 1990 World Cup in Italy, it directly contributed to the Italian Serie A being called the “Little World Cup” in the following years – Maradona, the “Troika” of Germany, and the “Three Musketeers” of the Netherlands. Looking back so far, They are all legends.
  What about the World Cup in Qatar? In response to the World Cup: 44-day break between rounds 16 and 17 of the Premier League; 51 days between rounds 14 and 15 of La Liga; 52 days between rounds 15 and 16 of Serie A; Bundesliga There is a 79-day break between the 15th and 16th rounds of the league; a 44-day break between the 15th and 16th rounds of the Ligue 1 league.
  When the Portuguese star Cristiano Ronaldo has a dispute with the Premier League Manchester United, assuming that there is no World Series in the middle of the season, the personal team and the club team who want to come to Ronaldo can sit down and discuss a compromise, or allow Ronaldo to fulfill the contract. Or break up peacefully, there must be a solution. But now, Ronaldo flew directly to Qatar and said that if the Portuguese team won the World Cup, he would retire immediately. How does this make Manchester United decide? After all, football is a team sport. If the various problems with the star Ronaldo cannot be resolved, should Manchester United introduce other players to make up for Ronaldo’s vacancy, or prepare to negotiate with Ronaldo and wait for him to come back to play? Contest? Regardless of the fact that Ronaldo and Manchester United have only a few months of work contracts, in fact, in the Premier League teams including Manchester United, there are many players who sign lease contracts for about three months to play games-the former Shenhua Nigerian player Ighalo is on loan at Manchester United. Such a short-term contract!
  Before the World Cup started, the Norwegian star Erling Haaland, who played for Manchester City, who is currently worth 170 million euros and is the most in the world, missed the World Cup because the Norwegian team failed to pass the qualifiers. For Manchester City, I don’t know whether it is good news or bad news. On the bright side, Haaland will not play in the World Cup to ensure that he will not be injured; but on the other hand, Haaland will have no official game for a month, how to ensure his state is a question The problem facing the club’s coaching team. Of course, compared to the players from 32 countries who went to Qatar to compete, the vast majority of professional players missed the World Cup. During this period, European and South American clubs will still maintain their status through friendly matches, invitational matches, etc., but in any case, these matches Neither can be equated with the official league.

Ecuador scored from a set-piece shortly after the opening game of the World Cup in Qatar, but the attacking player was ruled offside by VAR.

  Before the World Cup, there was “bad news” that defending champion France star Benzema’s old injury had relapsed. But for the club, the mentality of Benzema’s Real Madrid may be different from that of the French national team. You know, Benzema is the winner of the new Golden Globe Award. As early as 2014, when he was 26 years old, he helped the French team reach the quarter-finals of the World Cup with 3 goals. But starting in 2015, Benzema was rejected by the French team for 6 years. But this did not affect the French team winning the World Cup again in 2018, nor did it affect Benzema’s winning the Golden Globe at the age of 34. Now, at the end of his career, for Real Madrid, it doesn’t care if it adds a new world championship title, or achieves good results in the World Series to make its value rise, the only hope is-through the next month’s After rest and adjustment, Benzema can recover and continue to play in the Spanish league.

  As for football clubs from various countries with players competing in the World Cup, of course, each has its own benefits and sacrifices. For example, the Chinese Super League team Shanghai Shenhua is expected to receive a compensation of US$210,000 from FIFA because Bassogo was selected for the Cameroon World Cup squad. On the other hand, because the Chinese team did not qualify for the World Cup and the Chinese Super League was not suspended during the World Cup, Shenhua had to overcome the difficulty of Bassogo’s absence. Maybe some adjustments should be made to the ranking target of this year’s Super League.
High and new technology emerges in an endless stream

  Looking back at the history of the World Cup, there are always changes to the rules due to changes in external conditions. This is also an inevitable law of football development. Qatar World Cup is no exception. Why did the current World Cup begin with changing the quota of 3 substitutions to 5 substitutions? Perhaps the reason for this was the fact that the weather in Qatar is hot, and more substitutions can be made to ensure that the players on the field have sufficient physical strength to play the game. However, with the trial implementation of this rule, it was found that more substitutions in high-level games can make the game more intense and attractive, and test the coach’s commanding ability. For the team, it has to face the question of whether the “bench thickness” is enough. In June of this year, this new rule on substitution was “reverted” from a temporary measure to a permanent rule. Judging from the several games that have been played in the Qatar World Cup so far, whether it is the total running distance of the team or the number of 30-meter sprints, etc., in terms of technical statistics, the pace of the game is indeed faster.
  Faster games naturally have higher requirements for referees. Technology has promoted the steady improvement of referee skills. In 2002, the 17th World Cup used multi-signal broadcasting for the first time, some games used high-definition signals, and installed cameras on the net of the goal for the first time; in 2006, wireless headsets were introduced into the work of World Cup referees for the first time… In 2014, Brazil World Cup introduced GoalControl Goal line technology, the system installed 14 high-speed cameras on the steel frame above the court, shooting 500 frames per second, recording the situation of the goal area with an accuracy of 5 mm, and the “human wall spray” visible to the naked eye on the court “.
  In the 2018 World Cup in Russia, the VAR video assistant referee system further reduced misjudgments.
  In the 22nd World Cup in 2022, the technological trend continues to move forward. At present, the focus of the world on the field is the “Dream Journey”, which is a brand-new revolutionary football. Equipped with an Adidas suspension system that incorporates an inertial measurement unit (IMU) sensor that detects severe offside events. The sensor is located in the center of the ball and sends data from the ball to the video operation room 500 times per second, allowing very precise detection of the kick point.
  Another technical innovation lies in the application of semi-automatic offside technology. “This will be a support tool for referees, helping them make accurate, fast and repeatable offside calls during matches. The new technology will see 12 tracking cameras installed around the stadium. Every time the ball is passed to a player who is in an offside position The technology will automatically send an offside alert to the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) at any time, without the need for a long VAR playback to determine whether the player is offside.” FIFA announced.
  Maybe looking back in the future, the 2022 World Cup, which is constantly improving in technology, will become less alternative? After all, more and more countries and regions will participate in football in the future, and the football population will increase, and various new phenomena and situations will inevitably occur. When 48 representative teams participate in the next World Cup, nearly a quarter of FIFA members can participate in this big party. Regardless of whether such a World Cup is a classic or not, at least it is hilarious enough.
  Is the pursuit of excitement and some kind of alternative, without necessarily caring about the rankings you get, is it also a part of football itself? After the Qatar World Cup, Italy, which failed to enter the World Cup, is not worth watching for its lively league? Obviously not. For Chinese fans, after watching the World Cup, they will always take a look at their own league. This kind of proximity is also the essence of football.

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