“ Football Dreams... might be a bet hedged against World Cup embarrassment.”—
Brian K. Blickenstaff, in a report on Slate.com questioning Qatar’s intentions for Football Dreams, a humanitarian project operated by Aspire Academy that helps poor African prodigies launch careers in professional soccer.
Qatar will host the 2022 FIFA World Cup, and under FIFA rules, the host country’s team automatically qualifies for the tournament. Qatar, whose national team is ranked 88th in the world, has never accomplished this feat on its own.
If the Middle Eastern nation is able to draw players from across Africa, the country’s soccer prospects will immediately improve…
Qatar denies it plans to assimilate Football Dreams’ players into their World Cup team, pointing out how closely it works with the academy players’ respective national football associations.
More than 30 Football Dreams athletes have played for their native youth national teams, and no Football Dreams player has ever represented Qatar. The country, though, has a history of paying athletes in other sports to switch allegiance.
While Qatar has yet to officially buy any footballers, the size and the scope of the Aspire Academy suggests that the down payments have already been made.
Read the full story here.
And tell us what you think! Are the author’s assertions wild and unfair? Or just incredible enough to ring true?
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Underwater Football Team
Everything started in the living room of my childhood friend. She wasn’t there though. Britni Colby and a friend of his was though. A lady we referred to as Gran was sitting on the couch behind Britni and I. Colby and his friend were on the couch to our right. Some show was on the TV. Britni and I weren’t paying attention we were chatting about something silly and laughing. Just laughing. Gramp (that’s what we called this man) was in kitchen on the phone with his friend who was a level one employee of this anti virus program for computers. Gramp was trying to figure out why it wasn’t working. I don’t remember what was wrong with it. I could hear Gramp getting frustrated with his friend
“Can’t you just over ride it you’re basically the top man”
is what I heard him say
“Everything’s just fine. Gramp just gets flustered” gram told us.
We are all in the kitchen its the next day. A new character has made an appearance she is an aunt of ours. She she is a little absent minded. You can tell by what she is wearing. Colors and patterns that don’t match half her dress is tucked into her knickers she has fire orange hair and cat eye glasses. She is on the phone right now chatting about something. It looks stressful. Gramp walks in
“Did you call?”
“Yes! Its all set!!”
I felt instantly that she did something wrong. Just a gut feeling. After about an hour a school bus was in our kitchen. I was just as surprised as everyone else..except our aunt. She looked thrilled
“What did you do?!” Gramp hollared at aunt.
” just what you wanted. A bus and football team!”
In jogs a football team. College from what I could tell. Their colors were red and white and they all had red helmets. I was stuck in the back of the bus as we started moving with Gramp driving. I guess he was going to coach this team after all.
The bus is under water. I’m hanging half my body out the emergency exit. I can breathe in the water. The colors are bright and changing. Coral and reds and yellows. The water is thick like jello. We leave traces as we drive through.
I wake up in a puddle by the ocean naked. It feels absolutely normal to me. Its a warm and beautiful morning I start jogging home. I’m running up a small hill the sand is dark and fluffy like mulch. There is a white picket fence to my left. I see grand beach houses with happy little families inside. By the look of the sun it is late in the morning maybe 10. I’m hoping no one sees me. I see my house up ahead my mother is fanning out laundry. She is young again with long curly golden hair. I saw her in slow motion as I jogged closer. She is wearing the dress she wore Christmas eve when I was 6. She is so beautiful. I reach the stairs and walk up. I see my father sitting in a lawn chair smiling at me. He hands me a towel. I was happy to be home in the sun.
Notes: Its the most abstract one I’ve had in a while. Everything was tangible. And I woke up feeling refreshed.
Objective Context: I watched What Dreams May Come. It was beautiful and took me to another world.