“They shower dressed”, James Rodriguez shocked by Qatar


By: Manu Tournoux

James Rodriguez has revealed his struggles adapting to Qatari culture during his difficult 12 months at Al-Rayyan.

The Colombian joined the Gulf after leaving Everton in 2021. He failed to establish himself in the Qatar Stars League, where he scored just four goals before joining Olympiakos a year later.

Looking back, Rodriguez attributes his disappointing performance in part to the difficulties he had adjusting to life in Qatar. In an interview with Brazilian television channel Globo, Rodriguez said: “Life and culture in Qatar are very difficult, it is a country where it was difficult to adapt. You know in football everyone is naked when they shower, but my teammates told me: ‘You can’t do that.’ I was scared. In Qatar, you eat with your hands, which was difficult for me. I said, “No thanks.” I asked for cutlery and they said, “No, with my hand,” and I said, “You’re crazy, I won’t eat with my hand.”

Rodriguez’s poor performance in Qatar is surprising given the results he achieved in the Premier League before injuries and the arrival of Rafa Benitez at Goodison Park ended his time at Everton. His transfer to Greece, to Olympiakos, took place in the same way as his stay on the banks of the Mersey, with a fanfare debut followed by a decline in performance, to the point that his contract was terminated by mutual consent.

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