Fans, fun, fireworks: Qatar World Cup 2022 enjoys rare normality | Sean Ingle

Matches kick off with fan zones looking like construction sites, persistent fears over how gay fans will be treated and concerns over human rights abusesIf this World Cup finally has a pulse, it was first detected on Doha’s Corniche shortly after 6pm on Saturday, as an adrenalised version of Seven Nation Army segued into a We Are the Champions cover with enough distorted bass to make ear drums bleed.At that moment hundreds of fans at Fifa’s fan festival – particularly from Mexico, Argentina, Wales and Tunisia – pushed their hands recklessly into the air, while thousands of curious locals watched and waved mobile phones.

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