Qatar’s first match on the World Cup finals led to frustration with an unparalleled group and a spot in soccer’s undesirable historical past.
A match riddled with controversy opened Sunday with Qatar outplaying and embarrassing a 2-0 loss to Ecuador in entrance of 67,372 followers at Al Bayt Stadium. In 92 years of soccer’s largest occasion, the hosts have but to lose their opening match.
The primary World Cup within the Center East is a chance for Qatar, a small Arab nation on the Persian Gulf, to indicate itself to the broader world. The soccer group, taking part in at this stage for the primary time by advantage of internet hosting the match, couldn’t stay up-to-the-minute as Ecuador captain Enier Valencia scored each targets within the first half.
The match passed off after a colourful 30-minute opening ceremony – hosted by Academy Award-winning actor Morgan Freeman and attended by dignitaries together with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman – which promoted inclusivity and human dwelling “underneath one tent”.
For a lot of, that will distinction with the internet hosting of this World Cup by an emirate the place same-sex practices are unlawful, and one which has come underneath fireplace for the way in which expatriate employees to construct stadiums and infrastructure for tournaments have been handled since Qatar received the vote in 2010.
Years of scrutiny didn’t cease simply because taking part in on the sector lastly entered the narrative of a match riven by controversies over human rights, but a victory for the host nation would have at the least shone a highlight on Qatar, from a footballing perspective.
As an alternative, the Qatar gamers, after spending seven months collectively in a pre-tournament coaching camp underneath Spanish coach Felix Sanchez, froze in entrance of an expectant crowd and a disciplined Ecuadorian group that might pose a risk to extra outstanding opponents over the course of the season. over the subsequent few weeks.
And Valencia thought he had scored within the third minute when he headed in from shut vary after an acrobatic cross from Felix Torres. After a video assessment lasting about two minutes, the Ecuadorian celebrations have been lower quick by a purpose being disallowed for what seemed to be a marginal offside.
However Ecuador took the lead within the sixteenth minute when Saad Al Sheeb fouled Valencia after he rounded the goalkeeper who had been booked for the problem. Valencia was not detached as he jogged and transformed the penalty kick into the underside nook. The 33-year-old striker added his second purpose within the thirty third minute, heading in a right-wing cross from Angelo Preciado.
With Qatar’s passes typically misguided and their defensive frailties uncovered time and time once more, Ecuador had no downside holding on to their lead as Sanchez stood helpless in his technical space and the gang fell to their toes.
There have been loads of empty seats within the second half which was virtually a harm limiting train for Qatar.