Qatar loses 3-1 to Senegal, host nearing World Cup exit
The star-studded Qatar football team is in an early state of transition. Following a 4-0 thumping to Senegal last week, coach Abdulla Yameen has had to reshuffle his team, with three of the side’s first-choice defenders missing through injury.
On top of that, Qatari Football Association (QFA) president Khalid Faisal has been left with little choice but replace a couple of influential directors of football, as well as replacing the former coach.
Despite this, Qatari football has been thriving. Qatar is currently ranked as the 11th best FIFA ranking in Africa and the 13th best in Asia after their most recent fixtures against South Korea, China and Japan.
Doha are currently the only Asian team ranked in the top 20. However the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has not been pleased with Qatar’s form this season, with their last international match against Oman at the weekend being dubbed the worst performance by an Asian team at the World Cup since South Korea fell just short against Japan in 2010.
In Qatar, it has recently been reported that players are paid from “a single bank account where all their salary for the club and league have been transferred in”. This, together with the fact that all of the players use the same bank account to do their transactions, has prompted one observer to question whether the players are actually getting paid at all.
In fact, QFA chairman and President Khalid Faisal recently expressed his ‘disappointment’ with the system in order to appease the people of Qatar, while suggesting that such a system should be scrapped when the 2022 World Cup is up and running.
When the footballers were announced, former Barcelona forward Robert Pires was the number one target, but the former Chelsea man was unfortunately still recovering from an operation on his Achilles’ tendon, meaning that the Qatari football team will be without him for another game.