Fact Check: Video of People Offering Namaz in Russian Football Stadium Falsely Linked to FIFA WC 2022

FIFA World Cup 2022, kickstarted on November 20, 2022, with the opening ceremony being organised at the Al Bayt Stadium before the first match between the hosts Qatar and Ecuador. Many national and international celebrities participated in the grand celebration. 

Amidst all the news around the grand event, a viral video claiming that Qatar also organised a Namaz ceremony on the football field during the World Cup is doing the rounds on social media. Users have shared the video appreciating Qatar for keeping the beauty of Islam intact even during the World Cup. 

A Facebook user posted the viral video with a caption: বিশ্বকাপ ফুটবলের মাঠের মধ্যে নামাজ “কাতার” দেশটা তে  যেন সমস্ত দিকথেকে ইসলামের সৌন্দর্য ফুটিয়ে তোলার চেষ্টা করে যাচ্ছে! আল্লাহ তায়ালা কামিয়াব করুক আমিন (English translation: Namaz in the World Cup football field Qatar is trying to capture the beauty of Islam from all directions in the country! May Allah make it successful. Amen.)

You can check the video here.


NewsMobile fact-checked the viral video, and found it to be misleading.

Looking closely at the video, we can see KAZAN written in the background on the stands. Conducting a Keyword Search to know more about the stadium, we found that such stands are present at the Kazan arena in Kazan, Russia. 

The stadium in the viral video matches exactly with the Kazan arena hinting that the video might be from Russia. 

A YouTube Keyword Search around the events also identifies many videos, dating back to 2019, having the same visuals as the viral clip.

For instance, a YouTube video, titled: Praying In Stadium | Namaz in Kazan Stadium Russia, published on a verified channel named The message of Islam, dated June 10, 2019, matches exactly with the viral clip. 

Also, a news article titled: Tataristan Kazan’da, 15 bin kişilik İftar, published on May 26, 2019, in Düşünce Mektebi a Turkish media house, informs that over 15,000 people in the capital of Tatarstan, Russia, attended the Republican Iftar and performed the evening Namaz at the Kazan Arena.

We could not find a single credible news source informing that the namaz offering happened in Qatar during the FIFA World Cup. Therefore, based on our investigation, we can conclusively say that the viral video is misleading. 

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