This year’s World Cup in Qatar has been the most expensive in history. By far. That’s a fact. It has also been one of the most viewed World Cups, with billions of people closely watching, and Argentina winning it. This article will cover some of the most interesting data about the 2022 World Cup.
1. The most expensive World Cup in history
The total cost of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa was allegedly $3.6 billion, less than the $4.3 billion spent by Germany in 2006 or the $7 billion spent by Japan and South Korea in 2002, according to Front Office Sports.
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It was reported that $15 billion was spent on stadiums and other infrastructure for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, while “only” $11.6 billion was spent on similar projects for the 2018 World Cup in Russia. The estimated cost of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar is significantly higher than any of these other estimates.
A whopping $220 billion was reportedly spent for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, becoming the most expensive World Cup in history by far. It’s 18 times more than the cost of the last football event in 2018. Seven new stadiums, a new airport, a metro, and much more has been built for this World Cup. Qatar clearly didn’t try to skimp here, however…
Total costs of World Cups in billions of dollars, source: statista.com
2. Underpaid workers
It seems like the only way they could make this possible is through a cheap workforce. Hundreds of thousands of migrant workers, mostly from countries like India, Nepal, and Bangladesh, were brought in to construct World Cup venues. Thousands of workers reportedly died between 2010 and 2020.
It has been reported that many of these workers paid fees of up to $4,000 to secure contracts in Qatar, despite the fact that they were promised high wages and favorable working conditions. Workers who spent 10+ years in Qatar building the World Cup infrastructure complained of being paid less than $1 per hour for working 12-hour shifts in the scorching heat.
In response to international criticism, Qatar raised its minimum wage to $275 per month and instituted other reforms to its labor policy. However, this is still very low as Qatar has the ninth-highest salaries in the world, reportedly around $4,500 a month on average.
3. Social media activity through the roof
With 147 billion impressions, the #WC2022 tweets surpassed #WC2018 and more than doubled the #Tokyo2020 Olympic interaction. The final match between France and Argentina generated the most tweets from fans in history. The thrilling final match between France and Argentina was widely considered to be the greatest tournament final in history.
Even Elon Musk was watching it, reporting 24,400 tweets per second for the goals by France. Messi was undoubtedly the most-watched football player, and reportedly the most-mentioned player of the tournament on Twitter.
24,400 tweets per second for France’s goal, highest ever for World Cup!
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 18, 2022
Other fascinating numbers
- Argentina as a winning team received $42 million in prize money
- The annual reported value of Nike’s sponsorship deal with the French Football Federation is $60 million
- For the World Cup, FIFA has set aside $209 million to distribute to soccer clubs as a reward for producing players who go on to play for their national teams
- Kylian Mbappé of France reportedly became the highest-paid football player, earning a total of $128 million this season
- It has been reported that David Beckham was paid $277 million by Qatar to act as an ambassador for the 2022 World Cup (the sum will be paid out in 10 equal annual instalments)
- The total amount of gambling bets on the World Cup in the United States alone was expected to be around $1.8 billion
- The estimated revenue for FIFA from the World Cup 2022 is $4.7 billion