World Cup 2022: Day one in Qatar

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The 22nd World Cup’s opening game really was not a football match, and not just because it was such an easy Ecuador win. What we actually watched was a political summit, a genuine geopolitical event.

You only had to look at the most lucrative seats of all, rather than the swathes of empty ones as the hosts were beaten 2-0.

There, Fifa president Gianni Infantino sat between the emir of Qatar and Saudi Arabian crown prince Mohammed Bin Salman.

Here the Independent takes a look at the World Cup’s controversial first day and looks forward to tomorrow’s Group A and B games featuring England, Netherlands, Wales, Iran among others.

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