Thursday, December 02, 2010

The first South Asian World Cup

Congratulations to Qatar on getting the 2022 World Cup.  Irish people of a certain age may understand why we'd propose calling it the Sally O'Brien World Cup.  It beats contemplating the alternative universe where the Celtic Tiger hadn't crashed and we'd be today seeing a Fianna Fail celebration of having won the 2018 World Cup with the final to be held in Ryanair Field at Ahern Stadium.

Anyway, if Sepp Blatter can claim with a straight face (as we think he did during the announcement) that Zurich is the international capital of world football, then Doha can certainly claim that by 2022 they'll have some outdoor air-conditioning model figured out.  But here's our free advice to Qatar.  As the picture above from the Qatar News Agency shows, the local "celebrations" apparently consisted of government officials heading to the souks with Pakistani and Indian stores (owners and customers) and handing out Qatari flags. 

Since in all likelihood, at least 80 percent of the population will still be expatriate in 2022, it might be worth treating them as part of the target audience for the event and -- even more of a dream for sure -- hope that some country from South Asia actually qualifies for the tournament.  With all the money sloshing around to finance the preparations, how hard could a little investment in a South Asian fan base and a South Asian team be?  The former is already in Qatar

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