Samuel Eto’o, Qatar’s Legacy Ambassador and former Cameroonian striker is convinced the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup will be the most compact global showpiece in history.
He noted that his three-year stay in the country and having finished his football career with Qatar Sports Club has proven that the country would deliver one of the best World Cups in history.
He said “My personal experience of Qatar has been a positive one. I have been a resident for three years now, having finished my football career playing for Qatar Sports Club in 2019. While Qatar has its own unique culture and traditions, it also shares many similarities with previous World Cup host countries.
“One of the most unique things about this World Cup would be its compact nature. Once the fans, players, and officials arrive at Hamad International Airport, they would be able to stay in just one accommodation for the entire tournament. While many would stay at hotels or serviced apartments, Qatar would also have some unique accommodation options available to fans, such as the opportunity to camp in the desert or to stay onboard a luxury cruise liner moored in West Bay, which would have incredible views of Doha’s cityscape skyline.
“I think the tournament would have an Olympics-style feel to it. All the traveling fans and everyone living in Qatar would be in the thick of the action and feel connected to the tournament from start to finish. Fans would be able to attend more than one live match per day, which is very exciting and a first for a modern World Cup.”
The former Barcelona star said he counted himself lucky to have visited all four of the tournament-ready stadia, saying “each time I visit the stadia, I feel like a little kid that has been given a new toy. Walking into one of these new stadia for the first time, I always have the same thought – I wish I was ten years younger, so I could put my boots on and have the privilege of representing the people of Cameroon in this incredible venue.”
He added that every little detail of each stadium has been designed to deliver the best possible experience for both players and fans. “Although for me, one of the most impressive things is that some of the stadiums have been designed in such a way that they can be dismantled after the tournament, with large parts of the infrastructure donated to other countries. No other country has ever done something like this before and it will be a great legacy of Qatar 2022”.