Alcohol off the menu at Qatar World Cup stadiums

STORY: Alcohol will not be sold at Qatar's World Cup stadiums.

World soccer governing body FIFA made the announcement Friday (November 18).

It marks a late reversal for the host nation, and comes just two days before Sunday's (November 20) opening match.

Qatar is a conservative Muslim country with strict controls on alcohol, which cannot be consumed in public.

FIFA said after discussions with the host country a decision was made to focus the sale of alcohol on the FIFA Fan Festival, licensed venues and other fan destinations.

Budweiser, owned by mega-brewer AB InBev, is a major World Cup sponsor and was due to exclusively sell alcoholic beer within the tournament's eight stadiums.

A source told Reuters the policy change comes after long-term talks between FIFA president Gianni Infantino, Budweiser and executives from Qatari organisers.

Alcohol will be served inside the stadium hospitality zones, the source further said.

Budweiser will also sell its non-alcoholic beer throughout the stadium precincts.

Neither the brewer nor the Qatari organisers responded to Reuters' request for comment.

Budweiser will still sell alcoholic beer at the main FIFA Fan Fest in central Doha, the source said.

But it won't come cheap - costing around $14 per pint.