One of Qatar’s new World Cup football stadiums has been completed ahead of the 2022 tournament, and the reactions are in; apparently it looks like a vagina.
Every few years, FIFA’s Congress vote on which country should host the World Cup; an epic occasion anticipated by millions of people all over the world.
In 2010, officials decided the 2022 tournament should be held in Qatar, a choice which was shrouded in controversy. Many people look back fondly on the summer of 2018, when the sun was shining, drinks were flowing, and football was coming home – but the next World Cup will be very different.
— Aaron Taylor (@MeAaronTaylor) May 1, 2019
The event will be the first of the tournaments ever held in winter, making beer-garden viewing much less pleasant, and alcohol is set to be more limited for fans in attendance, as it will be restricted to designated areas.
But those changes aren’t the only issues that have made Qatar a talking point in the run up to the World Cup, as stadium design has also attracted a lot of attention.
Though, I suppose any massive structure that could be considered to bear resemblance to genitalia would do the same.
The Al Wakrah ground was designed by the late British-Iraqi architect Dame Zaha Hadid specifically for the World Cup, and people have been commenting on its appearance ever since artist’s impressions of the stadium were published in 2013.
At the time, Hadid spoke to TIME Magazine about the reactions, saying they were embarrassing to hear.
It’s really embarrassing they come up with nonsense stuff like this. What are they saying? Everything with a hole in it is a vagina? That’s ridiculous.
The architect added that if the building had been designed by a man, it would not have received the same kind of criticism.
Hadid based the building on the flowing shape of the traditional Arabian dhow boat, but despite its wholesome inspiration, people have still dubbed the structure ‘vagina stadium’.
Many people took to Twitter to share their reactions, with one person arguing for a more anatomically-correct nickname for the ground:
The internet keeps saying the Qatar stadium design looks like a vagina and I’m like “NO it looks like a VULVA”.
Vagina stadium in QATAR. It will be interesting come 2022
The internet keeps saying the Qatar stadium design looks like a vagina and I’m like “NO it looks like a VULVA” bc @Ahm76 taught me that.
— the post-pto comedown 💻⛓🥺 (@eeyikes) November 19, 2013
Vagina stadium in QATAR. It will be interesting😂😂😂😂😂😂 come 2022 pic.twitter.com/zNANIRebGb
— KIL MI KWIK (@Lewanjoski) December 19, 2018
One Twitter user embraced the design as a positive aspect of the World Cup, writing:
Reason number one that the 2022 world cup in qatar might be awesome. al-khor stadium vaguely resembles a vagina.
reason number one that the 2022 world cup in qatar might be awesome. al-khor stadium vaguely resembles a vagina.
— Devin (@usofarsenal) December 2, 2010
With a capacity of 40,000 the Al Wakrah stadium will be eligible to host fixtures through the group stage of the tournament, and knockout fixtures up to the quarter-finals.
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Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.