In the official box is Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, a member of the Qatari royal family, admiring the only thing he has: his wealth. There is Morgan Freeman, who has been called God. There’s BTS’s Jungkook in the VIP room, enjoying his brief reign. But who is really being talked about here in the Al Bayt stadium in Doha, 60,000 people, just 31 minutes into the opening game of the World Cup, is Enner Valencia. Boxer’s physique for functions of 9. The man who ended Tin Delgado’s record as Ecuador’s top scorer in 2014. South American front-page news in shorts.
Everything happened to him in 43 minutes: he scored the first World Cup goal, his first World Cup goal was disallowed, he scored the first World Cup penalty. As if that were not enough for his fantastic day, at 31′ he hit a header that cooled the stadium more than the air conditioning, set at a democratic 15 degrees in all the stands, so much so that even Neymar had to wear an abaya to keep warm – watch viral video on the web-. Ten minutes later,
The historic Ecuadorian captain and cup scorer until someone proves otherwise, thanked the affection with the only thing one really expects from his idols: playing lame for 90 minutes. This man born in Esmeraldas -where else is he- plays for Fenerbahçe SK in the Turkish Super League, but right now and until the next match of his team, he is Cristiano Ronaldo.
There is, however, a slight feeling of nostalgia in the seven Peruvians who are here, in a preferential location, dressed in a red-and-white shirt and a vivo X80 Pro mobile device, who take selfies with such clarity that even the emotions are visible. We could be Ecuador tonight Qatari. We could.
I have worked in the news industry for over 10 years. I have a keen interest in sports and have written for many different publications. I am currently working as an author at 24 News Recorder. I cover mostly sports news but also write about other topics such as current affairs and politics. I have a strong interest in social media and how it can be used to engage with audiences.