England set for World Cup downpour in desert that gets two days of rain a year

England could storm into the World Cup quarter-finals – as the Three Lions’ desert duel with Senegal is forecast to be hit by rain!

Qatar usually only gets a downpour on a couple of days a year. But weather experts predict one is on the way – just as Gareth Southgate’s stars take the field for their last-16 clash against the African champions on Sunday night.

One local website warned there was a 40% chance of showers. Another said there was a small chance of thunderstorm.

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Fans reckon a burst of good old British weather could tip the balance England’s way. David Merry, who lives locally, said: "Rain will definitely help us. Loads of England fans are talking on social media about the prospect of it raining on Sunday evening.’’

The chances of the month-long tournament getting a soaking were remote. Qatar gets less than 80mm-a-year – often in a couple of dramatic deluges.

Will the rain help England? Let us know in the comments section.

Online forecasters Weatherspark.com said the rainiest month was March but showers only last a day. The most likely day for a downpour is March 14 – when even then there is only a 6% chance of rain.

In 2015 the Gulf state was drenched by more than entire year’s worth of rain in 24 hours. Streets of the capital Doha were flooded, schools and shops had to shut, water poured through the roof of the then-newly built £11bn Hamad International Airport and a mall ceiling collapsed.

Qatar’s prime minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani (corr) ordered an inquiry blaming flaws in the construction of some World Cup infrastructure for the chaos. Another deluge sparking more floods hit in July. A source close to the England squad said: "Nobody will complain if there is a shower during the game – unless it’s rained off.’"

If England qualify no more rain is forecast for the rest of the tournament.


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