Friday essay: A World Cup debut for Qatar

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  1. It will be interesting to watch what FIFA do – especially in relation to the play off matches. It’s fair to day that these have gotten easier in recent years with New Zealand and Bahrain merely having to conquer one or each other whereas for years, Australia had to labour to defeat experienced European or South American opposition.

    I remember attending the World Athletics Championships in Paris in 2003 and a number of previously Kenyan athletes turning out for Qatar and winning medals. Again, FIFA need to be watched like a hawk. A lengthy residency requirement wasn’t part of the equation. Cash certainly was.

    Mind you, my first Qatari football memory was the creditable earning of a final spot in the World Youth Championship in the eighties so they may have the wherewithal to qualify on merit.

    Phil Stamp turning out for Qatar? That prospect might even sway the sceptics. Saturn would be a tough game mind. After all, it is a full planet.

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