The 2022 Qatar World Cup kicked off Sunday with K-pop super-band BTS' member Jungkook unveiling a new tournament song during the opening ceremony.
As the first South Korean singer to release a song for a World Cup soundtrack, Jungkook performed "Dreamers" live during the opening ceremony at Al-Bayt Stadium in Qatar. The song's feature artist Fahad Al Kubaisi performed with Jungkook on Sunday.
The seven-act ceremony lasted around half an hour, paying tribute to the 32 participating nations, previous World Cup hosts and volunteers.
Oscar-winning actor Morgan Freeman and Qatari social media star Ghanim Al-Muftah kicked off proceedings. A team of dancers performed the traditional Ardah sword dance, followed by the parade of 32 national teams displaying their flags and mascots.
Appearing below the Qatar World Cup's mascot La'eeb was Jungkook, dressed head to toe in black. The BTS member jumped around the stage with dozens of dancers, singing "Dreamers." Midway through Jungkook's performance, Qatari singer Fahad Al Kubaisi joined in.
"Dreamers" is a song produced by Grammy-winning Moroccan producer RedOne, and its lyrics sing a celebration of "those who boldly follow their goals and dare to dream," according to FIFA.
"Dreamers" was officially released a few hours before the ceremony. It swept the charts on its release, reaching the top of the iTunes Top Song chart in 100 countries in just 12 hours and heading onto top in two more countries in the next hour. In the US, the song reached No. 1 in just over two hours, which is the shortest time taken by a World Cup song.
"Dreamers" is the second official song Jungkook has put out independently of the group. In June, Jungkook featured in American singer-songwriter Charlie Puth's song "Left and Right." With it, the BTS member became the longest-charting K-pop solo artist on Billboard's Hot 100 main singles chart following Psy in 2013.
Meanwhile, the K-pop star met the South Korean national team during his stay in Qatar to support the players ahead of their tournament.
According to the Korea Football Association, Jungkook visited the Al Egla Training Facility in Doha, where the athletes had been residing before the World Cup and shared words of support and took pictures with the South Korean national team.
The Qatar World Cup is the first to be hosted by a Muslim country, and is also the first winter season World Cup.
The 32 nations will compete in eight groups, and a total of 64 matches will be played over 29 days. The final will take place at Lusail Stadium on Dec. 18, Qatar's National Day. The first match on Sunday ended with Qatar losing 2-0 to Ecuador.
South Korea's first match will be against Uruguay on Thursday, followed by Ghana on Nov. 28 and Portugal on Dec. 2.