World Cup organizers ban sale of alcoholic beer at stadiums

DOHA, Qatar (AP) — World Cup organizers will ban the sale of all alcoholic beer at eight stadiums used for soccer games, a person familiar with the matter told The Associated Press.

The decision was made just two days before the match in Qatar.

Fans will still be served non-alcoholic beer at 64 games, the person said.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because organizers have yet to announce a decision.

Budweiser’s parent company, AB InBev, pays tens of millions of dollars for the exclusive right to sell the beer at each World Cup. The company’s partnership with FIFA began with the 1986 tournament.

When Qatar launched its bid to host the World Cup, the country agreed to respect FIFA’s business partners and did so again when it signed the contract after winning the vote in 2010.

At the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, the host nation was forced to change its laws to allow the sale of alcohol in stadiums.

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