Qatar 2022 World Cup: Mascots from 1966 to 2018 showcased in must-see memorabilia exhibition

Qatar 2022 World Cup: Memorabilia exhibition opens in Doha
3 min read
Those visiting Qatar for the upcoming FIFA World Cup 2022 may wish to spend a few hours in the Doha City Center Complex perusing past tournament mascots and other World Cup memorabilia going all the way back to the first-ever game in 1930.

The Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy (SC) has put on a special exhibition of FIFA World Cup memorabilia, where visitors can see mascots displayed from former World Cup tournaments between 1966 and the 2018 World Cup in Russia, in addition to showcasing the private collection of Qatari collector Mohammed Abdullatif.

In the run-up to the Qatar 2022 World Cup, Abdullatif decided to donate his valuable collection of World Cup-related souvenirs to use as part of the exhibition for football fans from across the world visiting Doha for the World Cup.

"I have a ticket for the 1934 World Cup final between Italy and Czechoslovakia, which is closest to my heart, as it is very rare, because it bears the signature of three Italian players from the national team who participated in that final"

In an interview with Qatar 2022, Abdullatif spoke about his passion for the World Cup and his obsession with collecting mementoes from past World Cups, as well as his hopes for the upcoming tournament, which kicked off on 20 November with the inaugural match taking place at the Al Bayt Stadium.

Abdullatif, who possesses one of the most valuable collections of World Cup tickets, says his first memories of the World Cup go back to the 1982 tournament, which he watched on TV. However, it was only in 2014 that he began to collect souvenirs from World Cup tournaments, after reading an article about collecting World Cup tickets. The idea appealed to him and he decided to start collecting old tickets for the matches of all former World Cup tournaments since the first ever one in 1930.

The avid collector continues: "I managed to collect old tickets for 95 percent of past World Cup matches, up to the 2018 tournament in Russia. I also started collecting various related souvenirs, like mascots, balls and old newspapers. I now own more than 1,200 items related to the World Cup in my collection.

"I hope that everyone will enjoy seeing the mascots, it is wonderful seeing how the designs have changed since 1966 until we get to La'eeb – the official mascot of the Qatar 2022 World Cup, which is the first digital mascot in the history of the World Cup."

Society
Live Story

He says, "getting hold of one of the Uruguayan national team players' boots, who played in the 1930 World Cup was hardest. The boots were being sold at an auction where one of my friends was representing me, and after a tough competition with other collectors in Europe, we finally got them."

On his favourite item, Abdullatif replies: "I have a ticket for the 1934 World Cup final between Italy and Czechoslovakia, which is closest to my heart, as it is very rare because it bears the signature of three Italian players from the national team who participated in that final. This definitely increases its value. Though I have received offers of a lot of money for it, I'm holding on to it."

The World Cup Mascots exhibition is open to visitors between 8 am and 10 pm daily and is on the first floor of the City Center complex in Doha, Qatar until 20 December 2022.

This is an edited translation from our Arabic edition. To read the original article click here.

Translated by Rose Chacko   

This article is taken from our Arabic sister publication, Al-Araby Al Jadeed and mirrors the source's original editorial guidelines and reporting policies. Any requests for correction or comment will be forwarded to the original authors and editors.

Have questions or comments? Email us at: info@alaraby.co.uk