Qatar World Cup beer ban won’t apply to fans in expensive hospitality suites

Qatar World Cup beer ban won’t apply to fans in expensive hospitality suites

A U-turn simply days before the World Cup in Qatar means fans won’t find a way to drink beer in the stadiums. (Getty)

Football fans who’ve shelled out for expensive hospitality suites at the Qatar World Cup will not be affected by the last-minute stadium beer ban.

It comes after the sale of alcohol at stadiums in the country was banned simply two days before the event.

Initially, fans had been due to find a way to purchase Budweiser – a sponsor of the event – inside each of the eight World Cup stadiums, however a last-minute U-turn means alcohol can not be consumed inside stadium perimeters.

Supporters will nonetheless find a way to devour alcohol in designated fan zones.

However, it has emerged that the one individuals exempt from the stadium alcohol ban will be these in expensive company hospitality.

MATCH Hospitality, the worldwide supplier of the FIFA World Cup 2022 official hospitality programme, confirmed that its hospitality suites will not be affected by the ban.

In a statement, it said: “Please note that those in corporate areas of the stadiums, which include official hospitality spaces, will be served alcohol as per the product inclusions of the product purchased.”

The solely individuals who will find a way to drink in stadiums will be these in company hospitality. (MATCH Hospitality)
Qatar World Cup beer ban won't apply to fans in expensive hospitality suites
Hospitality packages vary in value from £800 ($950) per individual up to hundreds of thousands. (MATCH Hospitality)

More than 240,000 hospitality packages have reportedly been offered, ranging in luxurious and value. One suite, which may accommodate 44 individuals, offered for £2.1 million, in accordance to Metro.

Perks of company hospitality packages can embody glass-fronted containers, entry to stadium seats, in addition to a devoted concierge, live chef stations and multi-course menus.

MATCH Hospitality additionally gives ‘MATCH House’, a venue which permits individuals to watch live-streamed matches for particular games with out having a set, and embody beer and wine.

Packages for the venue, which is at the FIFA Fan Festival web site, could be booked by game and vary from $450 per individual to $1,145.

Qatar World Cup beer ban won't apply to fans in expensive hospitality suites
Some fans have forked out for private fits for the event. (MATCH Hospitality)

The alcohol ban in stadiums is believed to have come after pressure from Qatar’s rulers, together with the Gulf state’s Emir, and reportedly led to disaster talks between FIFA and Budweiser’s beer’s brewer, AB In-Bev.

The last-minute U-turn sparked anger from the Football Supporters’ Association, who accused organisers of a “total lack of communication”.

“Some fans like a beer at a game and some don’t, but the real issue is the last minute U-turn which speaks to a wider problem – the total lack of communication and clarity from the organising committee towards supporters,” a spokesperson said.

“If they can change their minds on this at a moment’s notice, with no explanation, supporters will have understandable concerns about whether they will fulfil other promises relating to accommodation, transport or cultural issues.”

In a statement FIFA said: “Following discussions between host country authorities and FIFA, a decision has been made to focus the sale of alcoholic beverages on the FIFA Fan Festival, other fan destinations and licensed venues, removing sales points of beer from Qatar’s FIFA World Cup 2022 stadium perimeters.

“There is no impact to the sale of Bud Zero which will remain available at all Qatar’s World Cup stadiums.

“Host country authorities and FIFA will continue to ensure that the stadiums and surrounding areas provide an enjoyable, respectful and pleasant experience for all fans.”

Speaking shortly after the news broke, England goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale said he thought travelling fans would discover a means of having fun with themselves regardless of the ban.

He said: “I think the fans will find some way of having a beer, I don’t think you need to do it so much at the game.

“Hopefully, with them not being able to drink we can perform on the pitch to give them that excitement and buzz. But we also have to respect the rules and continue to work, we will put pressure on ourselves to entertain from the football pitch.”

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