* Thousands gather at Lusail Boulevard to cheer for Team Qatar
The Lusail Boulevard turned out to be a sea of maroon as thousands of Al Annabi team supporters gathered at the venue cheering for the national team.
Nationals and expatriates including women and children gathered in groups right from early evening- literally swarming the entire area. Most fans were draped in maroon jerseys and shawls and started moving in a procession along the boulevard showing support for the host country's team. The youngsters were seen shouting slogans and dancing to the tunes of peppy tunes in support of the team, waving the national flag high.

People in large numbers holding flags and balloons

A Qatari national celebrating with the expatriate community.

It took a long time- maybe hours- for the procession to return to the starting point as the participants moved in small units singing and chanting, exhibiting all their support for the national team. There were also several art forms and some traditional musical presentations by expatriate participants as they went through the place. People holding saxophones, drums and other percussion instruments had a cheerful time, entertaining onlookers with their amazing and dazzling performances.

Children moving on skates in front of the procession.

One of the organisers of the fan gathering event said that they had planned it suddenly as they felt the need for such a public display to encourage Team Qatar. He said: “We just communicated to each other and soon people started responding in a big way. As we reached here, we could see people pouring in. Many of them came with their traditional forms of entertainment and it was so heartening to see such a large turnout. We are surprised by such a huge response and are hopeful that Team Qatar would perform fantastically well in the tournament .”
A participant in the gathering noted that it was the most happening time in Qatar and he wanted to join the party. “ I have come here as I learned about it through some friends. Most people have reached the venue spontaneously and wanted to express their love for Qatar. It is a great occasion and we are all in support of our host nation,” he added.
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