Although it is a sporting event, music is very important in football, especially in the World Cup. Whether whistling or celebrating, football fans will convey their emotions through chants and songs. And that’s why, since 1962, the organizers of the World Cup have made it a tradition to have official anthems at every tournament. Most of these songs are praised not only for their catchy beats, but also for their ability to unite fans around the world in their favorite sport. This year, however, one song on the 2022 soundtrack received a lot of mixed reviews.
On November 18, FIFA released the official fan anthem “Tukoh Taka” featuring Lebanese singer Miriam Fares, as well as Nicki Minaj and Colombian singer Maluma. The music video caused a stir due to Miriam Fares’ sensual dance moves and revealing clothing. Many accused Fares of trying to imitate the style and clothes of Colombian singer Shakira instead of representing his own heritage. Fans argued that the Arab singer who was honored to sing on the official soundtrack of the World Cup should have used the opportunity to showcase her own culture, with commentators on the international Arab news channel Al Arabiya saying that Fares “does not reflect the Arab identity”.
People are worried not only about the “immodesty” of the clip, but also about the text of the song itself. The song is composed with lyrics in Spanish, Arabic and English, and the comments were flooded with fans complaining that the “lyrics are meaningless in all languages” and do not convey the deep sense of unity that is the World Cup. One of the top comments on the “Tukoh Taka” video on YouTube reads: “This has nothing to do with the World Cup,” along with thousands of similar comments protesting that the lyrics are meaningless.
However, not everyone hates “Tukoh taka”, some appreciate the lyrics. Many fans have even recognized that the phrase “Tukoh Taka” may be a reference to the phrase “Tiki Taka”, the name of a soccer strategy popularized by Spanish broadcaster Andres Montes. The lyrics aren’t the only thing people like, many of them are also fans of the fast heart beat; some comments under social media posts regarding the song even claim that “the song is so bad but catchy”.
Although the song is not the official song of the World Cup, Tuko Taka has caught the attention of millions. Miriam Phares has made a song that will be remembered by critics and fans alike, which is certainly a unique achievement.