FIFA, the organizers of this year’s Qatar World Cup, has claimed that a total of 1.8 million tickets have already been sold for the competition.

Football’s governing body announced the numbers in a press release ahead of the next round of ticket sales which will open on July 5th.

Tickets are always reserved for residents of the host nation as a special category therefore most of the tickets have been bought in Qatar and by the fans in the Gulf states.

Aside from Qatar, people from Canada, England, France, Germany, India, Saudi Arabia, Spain, the United Arab Emirates, and the United States have purchased the most amount of tickets, FIFA said in a press release.

FIFA expects to offer a total of 3 million match tickets during the 28-day tournament, which kicks off on Nov. 21 with the next round of sales remaining open until Aug. 16.

The tickets will be confirmed on payment, on a first-come, first-served basis. The most recent phase of ticket sales, a random selection draw, closed at the end of April.

The healthy sale of tickets for the Qatar World Cup is welcome news for the organizers as many had questioned FIFA’s reasoning behind handing such a global event to Qatar, which did not even have stadiums built to host the matches at that time.

The tournament itself and its host are still marred in controversy though but that evidently will not stop a record number of people from tuning in.

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