First Qatar told fans they could drink beer at stadiums 3 hours before and after World cup matches.
Then Qatar told fans they could drink beer at stadiums 3 hours before and after World Cup matches but Budweiser would have to put the beer tents in less visible locations.
Now, in the 11th hour, Qatar has told FIFA and Budweiser that beer sales are completely banned from the stadiums.
The timing of this is the most infuriating thing about it. It was a text book bait and switch!! Promise the fans beer, then take it away after everyone has booked their flights and/or already on a flight to the country. Fifa and Qatar had TWELVE YEARS to come to an agreement over alcohol sales only for that agreement to be overturned with 72 HOURS TO GO!
Budweiser pays Fifa 75 million for serving rights and probably around another 200 million on ad buys promoting it as the official beer of the World Cup. That's chump change for the Qatari government so I wouldn't be surprised if they just write Bud a check for 300 million and say "sorry for the mix up", leaving the fans to be the ones impacted the most.
Also how dumb is the Qatari government? Beer was the biggest PR tool they had. You'd be surprised how many football fans would forget about human rights violations after a few pre-game cold ones. That doesn't reflect highly on humanity but it's the truth. Now they've just turned every booze bag soccer fan into a Social Justice Warrior moments before the tournament kicks off!
P.S. Wealthy folks paying 27,000 dollars for suites will still be able to drink so the Qatari government doesn't even have any moral high ground here