The Workers Cup

As they labour to build the facilities for Qatar's FIFA World Cup, migrant workers living in 21st century slave conditions participate in a soccer tournament of their own.

When Qatar was selected to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup, thousands of migrants from Africa, Asia and the Arab world were employed to build the infrastructure required. As they endure long hours of backbreaking work, draconian contracts, cramped accommodation and little access to the outside world, the construction giants come up with a soccer tournament that pits company against company to keep their labourers entertained. The workers have little else to do and so embrace the idea. Adam Sobel's expertly-pitched documentary exposes the juxtapositions at the heart of this story: the talented and the simply determined, the glitz and the reality, the impoverished workers and their all-powerful employers.

Grounding their on-field thrills in the off-field costs, Adam Sobel's debut documentary scores two goals. Aping sporting conventions, The Workers Cup relates a riveting underdog tale about a quest for glory, while simultaneously probing the reality faced by the poorest people in the world's wealthiest country. – Sarah Ward, Screen International

The Workers Cup fills a welcome niche in being an all too rare documentary about Qatar, with the added bonus of featuring charismatic characters spanning the world. It's also a very successful film about modern day slavery, which avoids pitying or patronising its subjects. – Charlie Phillips, The Guardian

Screens with: Great Muy Bien
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Adam Sobel


92 mins

English, Nepali, Malayalam, Twi, Ga, Hindi and Arabic with English subtitles



Rosie Garthwaite, Ramzy Haddad

Nazim Aggoune, Joe Saade

Lauren Wellbrock, Anne Jünemann, Adam Sobel

Sport, Human Rights, Middle East, International Documentaries

World Sales: Autlook Filmsales