The FIFA World Cup began on Sunday at the Al Bayt Stadium in Qatar, amid widespread protests from football fans over the beer ban in the eight host stadiums, with the home team facing Ecuador. During the first game, a large number of Ecuador fans were heard chanting “Queremos cerveza,” which translates to “We want beer.” Following discussions with the Qatari government just two days before the start of the World Cup, FIFA announced a ban on the sale of beer in all stadiums, despite previously announcing that the alcoholic drink would be available in the conservative nation.
Ecuadorian fans chanting in the stands, “Queremos cerveza, queremos cerveza!” or “We want beer!” as their team defeated Qatar 2-0 on Sunday, according to a video circulated on social media. The chant was in response to Qatar’s decision to prohibit the sale of alcoholic beverages in stadiums during the FIFA World Cup.
According to reports, fans can purchase alcohol in fan zones, but they are limited to four drinks/pints each at a cost of £12. Alcohol is also available in the stadium’s hospitality boxes, but not to general spectators. FIFA president Gianni Infantino on Saturday had said that the football fans would be able to survive three hours without beer in Qatar. “I think personally if for three hours a day you cannot drink a beer, you will survive,” Infantino had told in his opening press conference in Doha. “The same applies in France, Spain, Scotland,” Mr Infantino added.