Thousands of empty seats in Qatar 2022 opening matches

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A significant number of empty seats could be seen at two of Monday’s World Cup matches in Qatar.

The FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 chief executive said the country was “seized by football fever” after Sunday’s opening ceremony, but around a third of the seats appeared unoccupied throughout the season. Senegal match against the Netherlands at the Al Thumama stadium.

FIFA did not immediately know why this was the case, but it is understood that issues with the ticketing app which affected England fans who had access to the game against Iran also occurred during the match. Senegal-Netherlands match.

During the game against England at the Khalifa Stadium, thousands of empty seats were visible at kick-off, but the hall gradually filled up.

The official attendance of 41,721 for Senegal’s match also raised eyebrows, with the venue listed as having a capacity of 40,000 in the official media guide ahead of the tournament.

However, the final capacity in event mode is higher for each of the eight stadiums – Al Thumama can now hold 44,400 according to FIFA. However, that still didn’t explain the empty seats that could be seen.

There was similar confusion on Sunday night when Al Bayt Stadium’s official attendance was over 67,000, with the media guide saying the capacity was 60,000.

This stadium in Al Khor was virtually empty at full time as hosts Qatar succumbed to a 2-0 loss to Ecuador.

According to FIFA, almost three million tickets were sold for the final.

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By Peter Kavinsky

Peter Kavinsky is the Executive Editor at