World Cup 2022 Diary: Onana hits the right notes, a high-flying pianist and an Atlas Lion

Amadou Onana had a day to forget. Amadou Onana fans had a day to remember!

The 21-year-old was booked, and substituted, in Belgium's dismal 2-0 defeat to Morocco, but earlier showcased a lovely singing voice by performing a rendition of Solomon's Listen Up.

He wasn't the only musician to catch our eye, although we had to look skywards to see her. We also had some boisterous Moroccans, but I am not sure we can call them musicians.

Stats Perform's team on the ground has been out and about to bring you the sights and sounds of the 2022 World Cup.

STRICTLY NO PHOTOS

It’s been mentioned before in this daily diary, that journalists taking photos with players and managers after pre-match press conferences has been commonplace. Indeed, Louis van Gaal even gave one eager media member a hug!

But, that trend has also carried on into the mixed zone after matches, and it looks like FIFA – and perhaps the teams – have had enough.

There are now signs up in the mixed zones declaring “no photos, no videos, no selfies".

Not that it stopped some reporters filming the players, or getting photos, or even trying for selfies.

This sneaky photo of the sign is the only one that was taken by this particular Stats Perform reporter.

No Photos, No Videos, No Selfies
No Photos, No Videos, No Selfies


PEERLESS PIANIST ON A PERCH

Playing the piano is hard enough. But try doing it 30 feet in their air in blistering heat!!

VIPs entering the Al Thumama Stadium on Sunday, ahead of the clash between Belgium and Morocco, were treated to a performance from this remarkable musician.

Dressed in a white dress to cover the apparatus required to get her to her perch, she went through her repertoire, providing an element of calm before the action got underway in a boisterous atmosphere.


ONANA HITS THE RIGHT NOTES, OFF THE PITCH AT LEAST

Amadou Onana is full of hidden talents!

On the field, a tenacious midfielder for Belgium, off it, a young man with the voice of an angel!

Unfortunately for the youngster, his Sunday did not go as planned. Booked in Belgium's 2-0 defeat to Morocco, his second yellow card of the competition, Onana will now miss Thursday's crucial clash with Croatia.

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MOROCCO THRILL ONE ATLAS LION

Disappointment for Onana was in stark contrast to unbridled joy for Morocco and their legions of supporters.

Nicknamed the Atlas Lions, Morocco now have four points from two games and appear well-placed to advance to the knockout stages.

The post-match celebrations were too much for one fan, while another was suitably dressed as a lion!

 

A VERY SMALL – AND FLUFFY – CONSOLATION…

Juggling work duties with occasional bits of exploring while in Doha requires planning and efficiency.

Going somewhere on the fly isn't the best practice, as we found out on Sunday.

Hoping to explore a specific 'cool' park (more on that another day…), Stats Perform's Ryan Benson ended up getting lost around an entirely different one.

Walking in the full heat of the afternoon with a massive backpack on is never ideal, especially when you're ultimately unsuccessful in looking for a particular attraction.

But after admitting defeat while seeking shade, our hapless explorer stumbled upon a tiny kitten playing among some rocks.

The inquisitive feline was delighted with the attention, while Ryan was able to add another Qatari souvenir to his collection…

Just kitten!