Vuvuzelas in hand, check. Honorary draping of the home colours, check. Ready to hashtag those token disappointed tweets? Check. Whether a lover of football or not, there’s no escaping the World Cup hype over the past few weeks. So as Brazil and Croatia kick off proceedings later tonight, Khaleej Times goes out and about in Dubai to see what all the fuss is about.

Personally, the mere mention of football turns into a vague white noise in the space between my ears, but from gawdy merchandise giveaways at the local fastfood favourite, to combo deals and competitions, it seems everyone and every place in Dubai is getting on board the World Cup mania train.

Noted as the biggest single-event sporting competition in the world, the Fifa World Cup has been played every four years since the inaugural tournament in 1930 — barring 1942 and 1946 due to the Second World War.

Who’ll be tuning in?

With Brazil playing host this year after bagging the winning vote in 2002, more than 700 million people will tune in to their TVs to watch 64 games, lasting 90 minutes apiece — excluding extra time or penalty shoot-out, of course. But one person who won’t be among those 700 million is Dubai resident Akousa Nkansah.

“I’m not into the whole football thing. I think the atmosphere will be good around Dubai, but I won’t be changing my schedule to watch any of the matches. I grew up in the UK but my family is from Ghana originally, so I’ll be cheering for my home country, but ask me who plays for the team, and I’d struggle to tell you,” 28-year-old Nkansah said… see more

source: khaleejtimes