Qatar 2022: Pele visit in 1973 helps tiny Persian Gulf nation catch football fever as they start one-year countdown clock to World Cup hosting duties

In 1973, Brazilian soccer legend Pele visited Doha Stadium in Qatar along with Santos FC, and it’s pretty clear the trip had an impact on the country’s youth, said Matthias Krug, the author of Journeys on a Football Carpet, a non-fiction book about Qatar’s football history.“Just eight years later, a young Qatari side was making headlines halfway across the world,” said Krug, who was born and raised in Qatar. “They shocked Brazil 3-2 in the quarter finals and England 2-1 in the semi-finals to…


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