He’s not playing soccer, but Kenyan ‘Metro Man’ is a Fifa World Cup sensation

A screen grab from @metro_man001’s now viral TikTok account. Picture: Supplied

A screen grab from @metro_man001’s now viral TikTok account. Picture: Supplied

Published Nov 28, 2022


“How can you get lost in Qatar when you have this guy?” one TikToker asked.

And, indeed, “Metro Man’” Abubakar Abbass, 23, who is tasked in Qatar with directing Fifa World Cup 2022 soccer fans to a metro station, has done such a brilliant job that he has become an overnight social media sensation.

He has shown the world how, by taking an ordinary job you find boring and making it your own, you can open doors for yourself. He has even received gifts and an award for how he has contributed to the joy of the World Cup.

Abbass is one of tens of thousands of worldwide workers and volunteers invited to help organise and take part in the first World Cup to be played in an Arab country.

And just before the USA vs England game he was called on to the field to do his thing – calling out the now-famous word “metro”, with fans screaming back either “metro” or “this way”.

@bfordlancer ‘Metro’ guy at the USA vs. England game! #worldcup #qatar #metro ♬ original sound - BFordLancer

One TikToker even said: “Metro Man more famous in the World Cup than Messi and Ronaldo combined.”

Another said: “Brother, thank you for your service”, while others have said the “metro, metro, metro, metro” he calls out of the megaphone will be their new ringtone.

Even the Fifa World Cup has applauded the Metro Man for his catchy style of guiding fans to the station.

One of his videos, in which he is perched on a tennis-umpire chair wearing a large foam finger and a reflector coat, shows him directing fans visiting Souq Waqif market to a nearby metro station using a megaphone.

The video of him calling out “metro” has gone viral, with many dueting @metro_man001.

The world has been pouring out its love on Abbass, and he says on his new TikTok account that when he says “metro” he means a metro station in Doho.

As he explained in a short interview uploaded to his account: “The fans were just passing by, and I thought of a way that I could engage them and have fun with them.”

“Saying: ‘Metro this way… metro this way’ over and over was tiresome and boring. That is why I wanted to make it interesting,” he said.

Now his ways of engaging fans have caused a worldwide internet sensation.

Every time he says: “Metro”, fans from all over the world in Qatar for the World Cup repeat after him or chant: “This way!”

@queensas94 Stadium guy! #qatar #worldcup #metro #metroguy #fyp #doha #fwc #fifa #metrothisway #stadiumthisway #974 ♬ original sound - SK✨

“I love you guys. Keep sharing, keep posting, and keep commenting. And another thing: I have only one account, so whoever is impersonating me, please report that account and unfollow it,” Abbass said on his @metro_man001 TikTok account.

Clips of him posted by fans have received millions of views and likes.

And here he is: see below

@metro_man001 #fifaworldcup #fifaworldcup2022 #metroman001 #souqwaqif #metro #doha #qatar ♬ original sound - metro man001

The content creator whose first post as metro_man001 was uploaded five days ago has already garnered quite a following of almost 45 000. However, videos of him uploaded by fans from many countries have received millions of likes and follows.

“For the first time in my life, I received a gift. Thank you, TikTok, thank you to my office, and thank you, TikTok users,” he wrote. - Vivian Warby

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