British newspapers report the observations of English female fans.. “We don’t know how Qatar did it!”

British newspapers and media have praised the measures taken by the authorities of the State of Qatar, which is organizing the 2022 World Cup, to ensure the safety of fans while attending the matches, especially women.

The British newspaper The Times, in turn, reported the testimonies of English female fans who came to Doha to support their country’s national team. They described Qatar’s stadiums as being more suitable for women to watch matches compared to those in the United Kingdom.

Under the slogan “It’s also HerGameToo,” Ellie Moloson (19 years old), a student from Nottingham, is running a wide campaign in her country to make football stadiums more welcoming to women, due to the harassment they are exposed to during matches.

The girl pointed out that before she came to Qatar to support the England national team, she asked her father to accompany her to Doha, influenced by the Western campaign against Qatar and accusing it of discrimination against women among a group of other allegations.

“I had all these preconceived notions about what I would be up against, but it wasn’t the case,” Ellie said. I was not subjected to any of the harassment that I was subjected to in England. I don’t know how Qatar achieved this, but it’s a great environment to experience.”

Ellie admitted to the British newspaper that she did not need to upset her father because the World Cup stadiums in Qatar are different from what they are in her country, “there were no sarcastic chants or discrimination on the basis of sex of any kind.”

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Her father, a 49-year-old teacher, said he had come to Qatar primarily to look after Ellie, but frankly admitted he had no need to do so after what he found in Doha.

In turn, the English cheerleader Jo Glover (47 years), who is a Chelsea fan from Milton Keynes and has been attending the World Cup since the 2010 South African edition, expressed her fascination with the Qatar World Cup, saying, “The general atmosphere here is less nervous, as everyone wears the colors of their national team, and there are no problems.”

The newspaper quoted testimonies from several women that Qatar’s sudden decision not to allow the sale of alcohol around stadiums helped create a less hostile environment. Some recalled the drunks who caused mayhem at Wembley when England reached the European Championship final in July 2020.

“The final atmosphere of the Euro wasn’t pleasant, it was tense,” says Joe Glover. It doesn’t matter if you can’t have a drink in the stadium, football shouldn’t be about getting drunk.

Cheerleaders have also been warned about the cultural norms in Qatar about clothing, but Jo says, “As a woman, I didn’t find it embarrassing here. I have a pashmina (scarf) in my bag in case I am asked to cover my shoulder, but I have not been asked to use it yet.”

In addition to the female fans’ testimonies, the British newspaper report quoted a statement by the former English player Lianne Sanderson (34 years old) and the presenter of the TalkSPORT program, in which she praised the organizational atmosphere in the Qatar World Cup.

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She also highlighted the restrictions on alcohol, saying, “If you can’t go to a football match and enjoy it without getting hit in the face, you’d better not come.”

The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) said that 18.7 million people watched its coverage of England’s 3-0 victory over Wales on Tuesday night, and the atmosphere among the fans at Ahmed Bin Ali Stadium in Doha was noticeably less rowdy than usual.

In the context, a senior British police officer saw that the absence of riots in Qatar during the World Cup is evidence that the British government should not ease restrictions on alcohol in football stadiums.

Chief Constable Mark Roberts, who is in charge of the UK’s football police force, said the atmosphere in Qatar was “spirited but friendly” similar to the Women’s Euro 2022 finals in the summer.

The British government is considering lifting a ban on drinking alcohol in stadiums in the major leagues, a restriction that has been in place for 36 years. Roberts says the UK could learn from the experience in Qatar and drop ideas of reintroducing alcohol in the stands.

It seems that the fans in the Arab World Cup not only notice the difference in the stands, but also inside the stadium, as Stephanie Frappart (38 years) became the first woman to referee in the men’s World Cup match between Germany and Costa Rica. There will be two assistant referees, Salima Mukansanga and Yoshimi Yamashita.

Stephanie Frappart described the inclusion of female referees in the World Cup in Qatar as “a strong signal from FIFA (the International Football Association) and Doha that there are women referees in that country.”

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