Inside Qatars other fan zone: a night watching football with Qatars migrant workers
It has the big screen, the pumping music and the Fifa branding, but this is a fan zone with a difference. There are no visiting supporters, no women, no team colours and certainly no beer. The clue is in the venue: a cricket stadium on the edge of Doha. Inside, thousands of mostly south Asian low-wage labourers, fill the stands or sit cross-legged on the grassy outfield.
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It is a world away from the polished face of Doha that most fans will see. The stadium fan zone is within Asian Town, a shopping and entertainment complex purpose-built for Qatars migrant workers about 30 minutes by car from the city centre. A vast expanse of warehouses, workshops and accommodation blocks stretches out for miles on one side, housing hundreds of thousands of workers, often in grim, crowded dorms.
On a wall near the entrance to the fan zone, a banner in Arabic, English and Hindi reads: Thanks for your contributions for delivering the best Fifa World Cup ever.
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