Qatar 2022

Al-Thawadi: 'The pandemic won't stop us from organising an extraordinary World Cup'

During the virtual presentation of the third World Cup stadium, Education City, the head of the Committee for Delivery and Legacy looked ahead to 2022.

Al-Thawadi: 'The pandemic won't stop us from organising an extraordinary World Cup'
HANDOUT REUTERS

Hassan Al-Thawady Secretary General of the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy, responsible for managing the projects of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, expressed his satisfaction and pride for the unveiling of three of the eight World Cup venues set to host the FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar. Despite to the inconveniences caused by the coronavirus pandemic which have impacted on many of the World Cup planning sectors, the Supreme Committee have managed to overcome various challenges and succeeded in unveiling the third stadium. Education City was finished three years after the inauguration of the Al-Khalifa International stadium, with the first stadium inaugurated in 2017 followed by the opening of the Al-Janoub stadium in 2019, the second World Cup venue.

Al-Thawady stated: "We worked according to a plan that allowed us to finish projects ahead of schedule, despite the new challenge presented by the pandemic. We continue to move forward in the the implementation of all our projects before the event starts in 2022 and plan to announce the opening of two more World Cup stadiums later this year.” 

He added, “it is true that the disadvantages of the pandemic required us to adapt to the new circumstances over the past few months, but we are still committed on organizing an extraordinary edition of the World Cup in 2022. We are currently implementing measures of social distancing and limited movement of people in our building sites. All World Cup sites including the the headquarters of the Supreme Committee in the city of Doha have seen necessary measures taken to ensure that there is no contagion of Covid19 with many employees working from home since mid-March."

Education City Stadium general viewsSoccer Football - Education City Stadium general views, Al Rayyan, Qatar - Undated picture provided June 16, 2020 General view of the Education City Stadium, which was recently completed for the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar's Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy/Handout via REUTERS

Exceptional circumstances

Al-Thawady added: "I am proud of the ability of our staff to adapt to extraordinary circumstances over the past few months, it was all a test for us in the drive for collaboration and distinctive communication. We created solutions for working towards the common goal, that of a wonderful World Cup in Qatar and recent SC programmes such as Generation Amazing, have made it easier to keep in touch with a large segment of society and encourage them to practice sports from home and to stay in shape.

As regards the opening of Education City, Al-Thawady said: "The stadium is absolutely wonderful and am sure it will be admired by both fans and players alike. It is an impeccable football arena and with seats in close proximity to the playing surface, it will be a great place to watch matches. I am looking forward to seeing a game played with the presence of 40,000 spectators. The stadium is uniquely and aesthetically shaped, and the external façade is decorated by panels which compose the shape of diamond as its colour changes due to the reflection of sunlight, which is why the stadium was nicknamed “Diamond in the Desert"