Sports

Georgia and Spain face off in World Cup qualifier

Tbilisi, Mar 28 (EFE).- Despite Barcelona’s and Real Madrid’s wide fan base in the nation of Georgia, the host country’s flag dominated the Spanish teams’ colors around Dinamo Arena, where people got a chance to attend a match for the first time in months.

“I’m a Madrid fan, but today I’m a patriot,” Yelena Mamedova, a Tbilisi State University student, told EFE.

The stadium is hosting only 30 percent of its capacity due to the gathering restrictions amid the coronavirus pandemic, a situation which also prompted the authorities to open the arena to spectators three hours before the World Cup qualifier between the Spanish and Georgian national teams.

Police officers took the temperature of all the fans, who were being allowed into the stadium for the first time since Georgia’s friendly against Croatia in November 2019.

David and Lazare, both Georgian university students, were among those who purchased tickets for $7 apiece to cheer for their national team.

“The money is from our savings, but we don’t regret it. If Georgia manages to beat one of the leaders of world football, we will watch it live and we will go crazy,” they told EFE.

Spain defeated Georgia 1-0 in their most recent clash, which took place on 11 September 2012 during the Brazil World Cup qualifiers.

The two national teams currently find themselves in Group B, alongside Greece, Kosovo and Sweden.

Spain was held to a 1-1 draw by Greece in their qualifiers opener, while Georgia was defeated 1-0 by Sweden. EFE-EPA

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