Home Sports Adrian Rutherford’s World Cup Diaries: Fake canals, skating rinks, VIP toilets… Shopping...

Adrian Rutherford’s World Cup Diaries: Fake canals, skating rinks, VIP toilets… Shopping malls, like everything else in Qatar, are an upscale splurge.


On our fourth day in Qatar, it’s time to hit the shops. But like everything else here, on a grand and exaggerated scale.

T.o Villaggio Mall is one of Doha’s many grand shopping complexes.

Earlier, I mentioned a fake channel that allows shoppers to browse while purchasing groceries for 20 riyals (around £5).

But more research shows that’s not all. Far from it.

There’s an Olympic-sized skating rink, an amusement park, and even a “VIP restroom” suite.

The mall is a large complex with about 200 shops, 45 of which are cafes and restaurants, over 40 clothing stores and 8 shoe stores.

Many of the big Western chains have branches here, including Ted Baker, Calvin Klein and even M&S.

Named for its design inspiration from Italy, this model carries the flags and umbrellas of the 32 countries competing in the World Cup.

The mall’s most opulent section is called ‘Via Domo’ and is modeled after Milan with its artistically designed ceiling.

Outside, there are references to the San Siro stadium, with circular towers joined by red cross beams at the entrance.

Japan cleans up the Germans

Japan took the field by three with a shock win over Germany, and the fans did the same in the stands.

Fans celebrating the 2-1 win picked up trash before leaving the stadium.

Japanese fans were also seen clearing the stands after Sunday’s opening match.

Social media footage shows Japanese fans lining up to collect trash during the Qatar-Ecuador match.

They have done the same in previous tournaments, and their respectful behavior has allowed Japan to win prize money in Qatar as well as in matches.

no fireworks are a little wet bullet

Discerning spectators were able to see a giant inflatable World Cup and watch fireworks go off from the pre-match assembly building.

Yesterday’s four games began with a simple presentation of just the opposing team’s two giant flags.

The organizers explained that the pre-match ceremony will be in “prize” and “standard” versions (FIFA speaks) and that they are interchangeable.

Inflated cups and flames were rumored to return in the final round of group stage matches.

The opening match between Qatar and Ecuador ended in a complete fiasco when the inflated trophy fell before kickoff.

What a disappointment…

Today’s match: Brazil vs Serbia

The favorites for this tournament are Brazil and Neymar, both of whom will make their debut in the group stage first round finals. Serbia may not have striker Alexander Mitrovic, but they do have enough players to annoy their opponents.

Adrian Rutherford
Source: Belfast Telegraph



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