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The women of soccer: the other World Cup in Qatar | Close up

Of: Close-up of Al Jazeera

These Bangladeshi street girls are turning heads on the field of Qatar’s other World Cup: the Street Children’s World Cup.

Eti left home when she was eight years old. “No one wanted me in my family. I survived by begging. I used to beg all day on the train and was often beaten for begging,” says the 13-year-old, recounting what life was like for her on the streets of Dhaka.

Until recently, Eti was one of nearly 1.5 million children living on the streets of Bangladesh, one of the poorest and most densely populated countries in the world. But today, Eti and 11 of his friends are on a very different journey: they are representing Bangladesh in a World Cup with a twist: the Street Children’s World Cup in Qatar.

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This event, which takes place every four years and takes place before the FIFA World Cup, brings together 28 soccer teams of street children from all over the world. The World Cup for Street Children is more than football. It is an opportunity to shine a light on what it is like to be homeless and the triumphs children experience while in Qatar. In Eti’s own words: “I was a drug addict and there was no hope in my life. Now I have come to Qatar to represent my country in this World Cup. Win or lose, it doesn’t matter. I’m happy for the trip.”


A Gautam Singh film

Additional Cinematography: Rawyan Shayema ​​and Robin Paul

Sound on location: Sazzad Ahmed and Nikki Singh

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Sound: Linus Bergman

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Editor: Jameel Hodzic

EP: Tierney Bonini

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