The 2022 FIFA World Cup is scheduled to be the 22nd running of the FIFA World Cup competition, the quadrennial international men's football championship contested by the senior national teams of the member associations of FIFA. It is scheduled to take place in Qatar from 20 November to 18 December 2022. +more This will be the first World Cup ever to be held in the Arab world, and the second World Cup held entirely in Asia after the 2002 tournament in South Korea and Japan. In addition, the tournament is scheduled to be the last with a 32-team field; the field is slated to increase to 48 teams for the 2026 tournament in the United States, Mexico, and Canada.

Due to Qatar's intense summer heat, this World Cup will be held from late-November to mid-December, making it the first tournament not to be held in May, June, or July and to take place in the northern autumn; it will be played in a reduced timeframe of around 29 days. The opening match will be contested between Qatar and Ecuador at Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor. +more The final is due to be held on 18 December 2022, which is also Qatar National Day. The reigning World Cup champions are France.

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    Host selection

    The bidding procedure to host the 2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cups began in January 2009, and national associations had until 2 February 2009 to register their interest. Initially, eleven bids were made for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, but Mexico later withdrew from proceedings, and Indonesia's bid was rejected by FIFA in February 2010 after the Indonesian Football Association failed to submit a letter of Indonesian government guarantee to support the bid. +more Indonesian officials had not ruled out a bid for the 2026 FIFA World Cup, until Qatar was awarded the 2022 tournament. During the bidding process, all non-UEFA nations gradually withdrew their 2018 bids, thus guaranteeing that a UEFA nation would host the 2018 tournament and thereby making UEFA nations ineligible for the 2022 bid.

    In the end, there were five bids for the 2022 FIFA World Cup: Australia, Japan, Qatar, South Korea, and the United States. The twenty-two member FIFA Executive Committee convened in Zürich on 2 December 2010 to vote to select the hosts of both tournaments. +more Two FIFA executive committee members were suspended before the vote in relation to allegations of corruption regarding their votes. The decision to host the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, which was graded as having "high operational risk", generated criticism from media commentators. It has been criticised by many as being part of the FIFA corruption scandals.

    The voting patterns were as follows:

    Round 1Round 2Round 3Round 4
    Qatar111011
    United States356
    South Korea455
    Japan32colspan=2
    Australia1colspan=3colspan=3

    Host selection criticism

    There have been allegations of bribery and corruption in the selection process involving FIFA's executive committee members. These allegations are being investigated by FIFA . +more In May 2011, allegations of corruption within the FIFA senior officials raised questions over the legitimacy of the World Cup 2022 being held in Qatar. The accusations of corruption have been made relating to how Qatar won the right to host the event. A FIFA internal investigation and report cleared Qatar of any violation, but chief investigator Michael J. Garcia has since described FIFA's report on his enquiry as containing "numerous materially incomplete and erroneous representations. " On 27 May 2015, Swiss federal prosecutors opened an investigation into corruption and money laundering related to the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bids. On 6 August 2018, former FIFA president Sepp Blatter claimed that Qatar had used "black ops", suggesting that the bid committee had cheated to win the hosting rights. Some investigations found that Qatar sought an edge in securing hosting by hiring a former CIA officer turned private contractor, Kevin Chalker, to spy on rival bid teams and key football officials who picked the winner in 2010.

    Additionally, Qatar has faced strong criticism due to the treatment of foreign workers involved in preparation for the World Cup, with Amnesty International referring to "forced labour" and poor working conditions, while many migrant workers reported having to pay large "recruitment fees" to obtain employment. An investigation by The Guardian newspaper claimed that many workers are denied food and water, have their identity papers taken away from them, and that they are not paid on time or at all, making some of them in effect slaves. +more The Guardian has estimated that up to 4,000 workers may die due to lax safety and other causes by the time the competition is held. Between 2015 and 2021, the Qatari government adopted new labour reforms to improve working conditions, including a minimum wage for all workers and the removal of the kafala system. According to Amnesty International, however, living and working conditions of the foreign workers have not improved in the last years.

    Qatar is the smallest nation by area ever to have been awarded a FIFA World Cup - the next smallest by area is Switzerland, host of the 1954 World Cup, which is more than three times as large as Qatar and only needed to host 16 teams instead of the current 32. Qatar also became only the second country (not including Uruguay and Italy, hosts of the first two World Cups) to be awarded a FIFA World Cup despite having never qualified for a previous edition: Japan was awarded co-hosting rights of the 2002 World Cup in 1996 without ever having qualified for the finals, although they subsequently did qualify for the 1998 edition. +more 6 of the 8 stadiums that will be used in the tournament are located in the Doha metropolitan area, therefore, it is the first World Cup since 1930 in which most of the stadiums are in one city. While this does decrease the amount that fans and players will need to commute, conversely, the country itself is struggling to accommodate the amount of arriving fans with its diminutive amount of space.

    Football fans around the world may find some apprehensions about going to the World Cup in Qatar because of the alcohol laws concerning consuming alcohol in public places, but World Cup organizers have announced the creation of designated “sobering up” zones as a way to make fans feel safe and comfortable while attending the World Cup. The implementation of designated “sobering up” zones helps serve as an alternative to wide-scale arrests of intoxicated fans throughout the World Cup. +more Qatar’s World Cup chief executive of the supreme committee, Nasser Al Khater, was cited by Sky News ensuring safety for implementing the designated sobering-up areas, “It’s a place to make sure that they keep themselves safe, they are not harmful to anybody else. ” According to ESPN, if a fan is sent to the “sobering up” zone, they will be permitted to leave when they can display clearheaded behavior.

    Teams

    Qualification

    FIFA's six continental confederations organise their own qualifying competitions. All FIFA member associations, of which there are currently 211, were eligible to enter qualification. +more Qatar, as hosts, qualified automatically for the tournament. However, the AFC obliged Qatar to participate in the Asian qualifying stage as the first two rounds also act as qualification for the 2023 AFC Asian Cup. Since Qatar reached the final stage as winners in their group, Lebanon, the fifth-best second place team, advanced instead. The reigning World Cup champions France also went through qualifying stages as normal. Saint Lucia initially entered qualification but withdrew from it before their first match. North Korea withdrew from the qualifying round due to safety concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic. American Samoa and Samoa both withdrew before the OFC draw. Tonga withdrew after the 2022 Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha'apai eruption and tsunami. Due to COVID-19 outbreaks in their squads, Vanuatu and Cook Islands also withdrew because of the travel restrictions.

    Of the 32 nations qualified to play at the 2022 FIFA World Cup, 24 countries competed at the previous tournament in 2018. Qatar are the only team making their debut in the FIFA World Cup, becoming the first hosts to make their tournament debut since Italy in 1934. +more As a result, the 2022 tournament is the first World Cup in which none of the teams that earned a spot through qualification were making their debut. The Netherlands, Ecuador, Ghana, Cameroon and the United States returned to the tournament after missing the 2018 tournament. Canada returned after 36 years, their only prior appearance being in 1986. Wales made their first appearance in 64 years - a record gap for a European team, their only previous participation having been in 1958.

    Four-time world champions and reigning European champions Italy failed to qualify for a second successive World Cup for the first time in their history, losing in the qualification play-off semi-finals. The Italians were the only former champions that failed to qualify. +more Italy are also the fourth team to have failed to qualify for the upcoming World Cup having won the previous UEFA European Championship, after Czechoslovakia in 1978, Denmark in 1994 and Greece in 2006. The previous World Cup hosts, Russia, were disqualified from competing due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Chile, the 2015 and 2016 Copa América winners also failed to qualify for the second consecutive time. Nigeria went out to Ghana on away goals in CAF's final playoff round, having qualified for the previous three World Cups and six out of the last seven. Egypt, Panama, Colombia, Peru, Iceland and Sweden, all of whom qualified for the 2018 World Cup, also did not qualify for the 2022 tournament.

    Note: Numbers in parentheses indicate final positions in the FIFA Men's World Ranking before the tournament.

    AFC (6) * (38) * (20) * (24) * (50) (hosts) * (51) * (28)

    CAF (5) * (43) * (61) * (22) * (18) * (30)

    CONCACAF (4) * (41) * (31) * (13) * (16)

    CONMEBOL (4) * (3) * (1) * (44) * (14)

    OFC (0) * None qualified

    UEFA (13) * (2) * (12) * (10) * (5) * (4) * (11) * (8) * (26) * (9) * (21) * (7) * (15) * (19)

    Draw

    The final draw was held at the Doha Exhibition and Convention Center in Doha, Qatar, on 1 April 2022, 19:00 AST, prior to the completion of qualification. The two winners of the inter-confederation play-offs and the winner of the Path A of the UEFA play-offs were not known at the time of the draw.

    For the draw, the 32 teams were allocated into four pots based on the FIFA Men's World Rankings of 31 March 2022. Pot one contained the hosts Qatar (who were automatically assigned to position A1) and the best seven teams. +more Pot two contained the next best eight teams, with the next best eight teams into pot 3. Pot 4 contained the five lowest-ranked teams, along with the placeholders for the two inter-confederation play-off winners and the UEFA Path A play-off winner. Teams from the same confederation could not be drawn into the same group except for UEFA teams, for which there was at least one and no more than two per group. This principle also applied to the placeholder teams, with constraints applying based on the confederation of both potential winners of each play-off tie. The draw started with pot 1 and ended with pot 4, with each team selected then allocated into the first available group alphabetically. The position for the team within the group would then be drawn (for the purpose of the #Schedule|match schedule), with the pot 1 teams automatically drawn into position 1 of each group. The pots for the draw are shown below.

    %| Pot 1%| Pot 2%| Pot 3%| Pot 4
    (51) (hosts) (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (7) (8)(9) (10) (11) (12) (13) (14) (15) (16)(20) (21) (23) (24) (25) (26) (29) (35)(37) (38) (46) (49) (60) (18) (31) (42)

    Squads

    Before submitting their final squad for the tournament, teams name a provisional squad of up to 55 players. Teams were required to have their 55-player roster submitted to FIFA by 21 October. +more They are not required to make this public, although eleven teams have chosen to as of 3 November. Teams must name their final squads by 13 November. In August 2022, FIFA increased the final squad size to 26 players from a total of 23 players at the 2018 edition.

    Officiating

    ;" %"Referees
    ConfederationReferee
    AFCAbdulrahman Al-Jassim (Qatar)
    AFCChris Beath (Australia)
    AFCAlireza Faghani (Iran)
    AFCMa Ning (China PR)
    AFCMohammed Abdulla Hassan Mohamed (United Arab Emirates)
    AFCYoshimi Yamashita (Japan)
    CAFBakary Gassama (Gambia)
    CAFMustapha Ghorbal (Algeria)
    CAFVictor Gomes (South Africa)
    CAFSalima Mukansanga (Rwanda)
    CAFMaguette Ndiaye (Senegal)
    CAFJanny Sikazwe (Zambia)
    CONCACAFIván Barton (El Salvador)
    CONCACAFIsmail Elfath (United States)
    CONCACAFMario Escobar (Guatemala)
    CONCACAFSaid Martínez (Honduras)
    CONCACAFCésar Arturo Ramos (Mexico)
    CONMEBOLRaphael Claus (Brazil)
    CONMEBOLAndrés Matonte (Uruguay)
    CONMEBOLKevin Ortega (Peru)
    CONMEBOLFernando Rapallini (Argentina)
    CONMEBOLWilton Sampaio (Brazil)
    CONMEBOLFacundo Tello (Argentina)
    CONMEBOLJesús Valenzuela (Venezuela)
    OFCMatthew Conger (New Zealand)
    UEFAStéphanie Frappart (France)
    UEFAIstván Kovács (Romania)
    UEFADanny Makkelie (Netherlands)
    UEFASzymon Marciniak (Poland)
    UEFAAntonio Mateu Lahoz (Spain)
    UEFAMichael Oliver (England)
    UEFADaniele Orsato (Italy)
    UEFADaniel Siebert (Germany)
    UEFAAnthony Taylor (England)
    UEFAClément Turpin (France)
    UEFASlavko Vinčić (Slovenia)

    ;" %"Assistant referees
    ConfederationAssistant referee
    AFCMohammadreza Abolfazli (Iran)
    AFCTaleb Al-Marri (Qatar)
    AFCMohamed Al-Hammadi (United Arab Emirates)
    AFCHasan Al-Mahri (United Arab Emirates)
    AFCSaud Al-Maqaleh (Qatar)
    AFCAshley Beecham (Australia)
    AFCCao Yi (China PR)
    AFCMohammadreza Mansouri (Iran)
    AFCAnton Shchetinin (Australia)
    AFCShi Xiang (China PR)
    CAFMahmoud Abouelregal (Egypt)
    CAFDjibril Camara (Senegal)
    CAFJerson dos Santos (Angola)
    CAFAbdelhak Etchiali (Algeria)
    CAFMokrane Gourari (Algeria)
    CAFArsénio Marrengula (Mozambique)
    CAFElvis Noupue (Cameroon)
    CAFSouru Phatsoane (Lesotho)
    CAFEl Hadj Malick Samba (Senegal)
    CAFZakhele Siwela (South Africa)
    CONCACAFKyle Atkins (United States)
    CONCACAFKaren Díaz Medina (Mexico)
    CONCACAFHelpys Raymundo Feliz (Dominican Republic)
    CONCACAFMiguel Hernández (Mexico)
    CONCACAFWalter López (Honduras)
    CONCACAFJuan Carlos Mora (Costa Rica)
    CONCACAFDavid Morán (El Salvador)
    CONCACAFAlberto Morín (Mexico)
    CONCACAFKathryn Nesbitt (United States)
    CONCACAFCorey Parker (United States)
    CONCACAFCaleb Wales (Trinidad and Tobago)
    CONCACAFZachari Zeegelaar (Suriname)
    CONMEBOLNeuza Back (Brazil)
    CONMEBOLJuan Pablo Belatti (Argentina)
    CONMEBOLDiego Bonfá (Argentina)
    CONMEBOLBruno Boschilia (Brazil)
    CONMEBOLEzequiel Brailovsky (Argentina)
    CONMEBOLGabriel Chade (Argentina)
    CONMEBOLRodrigo Figueiredo (Brazil)
    CONMEBOLTulio Moreno (Venezuela)
    CONMEBOLMichael Orué (Peru)
    CONMEBOLBruno Pires (Brazil)
    CONMEBOLJesús Sánchez (Peru)
    CONMEBOLDanilo Manis (Brazil)
    CONMEBOLMartín Soppi (Uruguay)
    CONMEBOLNicolás Taran (Uruguay)
    CONMEBOLJorge Urrego (Venezuela)
    OFCTevita Makasini (Tonga)
    OFCMark Rule (New Zealand)
    UEFAOvidiu Artene (Romania)
    UEFASimon Bennett (England)
    UEFAGary Beswick (England)
    UEFAStuart Burt (England)
    UEFACiro Carbone (Italy)
    UEFAPau Cebrián Devís (Spain)
    UEFANicolas Danos (France)
    UEFAJan de Vries (Netherlands)
    UEFARoberto Díaz Pérez del Palomar (Spain)
    UEFARafael Foltyn (Germany)
    UEFAAlessandro Giallatini (Italy)
    UEFACyril Gringore (France)
    UEFATomaž Klančnik (Slovenia)
    UEFAAndraž Kovačič (Slovenia)
    UEFATomasz Listkiewicz (Poland)
    UEFAVasile Marinescu (Romania)
    UEFAAdam Nunn (England)
    UEFAJan Seidel (Germany)
    UEFAPaweł Sokolnicki (Poland)
    UEFAHessel Steegstra (Netherlands)

    ;" %"Video assistant referees
    ConfederationVideo assistant referee
    AFCAbdulla Al-Marri (Qatar)
    AFCMuhammad Taqi (Singapore)
    AFCShaun Evans (Australia)
    CAFRédouane Jiyed (Morocco)
    CAFAdil Zourak (Morocco)
    CONCACAFDrew Fischer (Canada)
    CONCACAFFernando Guerrero (Mexico)
    CONCACAFArmando Villarreal (United States)
    CONMEBOLJulio Bascuñán (Chile)
    CONMEBOLNicolás Gallo (Colombia)
    CONMEBOLLeodán González (Uruguay)
    CONMEBOLJuan Soto (Venezuela)
    CONMEBOLMauro Vigliano (Argentina)
    UEFAJérôme Brisard (France)
    UEFABastian Dankert (Germany)
    UEFARicardo de Burgos Bengoetxea (Spain)
    UEFAMarco Fritz (Germany)
    UEFAAlejandro Hernández Hernández (Spain)
    UEFAMassimiliano Irrati (Italy)
    UEFATomasz Kwiatkowski (Poland)
    UEFAJuan Martínez Munuera (Spain)
    UEFABenoît Millot (France)
    UEFAPaolo Valeri (Italy)
    UEFAPol van Boekel (Netherlands)

    Venues

    The first five proposed venues for the World Cup were unveiled at the beginning of March 2010. The country intends the stadiums to reflect the historical and cultural aspects of Qatar, and for the designs to meet the following terms of reference: legacy, comfort, accessibility, and sustainability. +more The stadiums will be equipped with cooling systems that aim to reduce temperatures within the stadium by up to 20 C-change, but it is not yet known if this will actually work in the open-air stadiums. Their marketing includes statements describing the stadiums as zero waste, and the upper tiers of the stadiums will be disassembled after the World Cup and donated to countries with less developed sports infrastructure. Qatar aspires to be compliant and certified by the Global Sustainability Assessment System (GSAS) for all the World Cup stadiums. All of the five stadium projects launched have been designed by German architect Albert Speer & Partners. The Al Bayt Stadium will be the only indoor stadium of the eight used.

    A report released on 9 December 2010 quoted FIFA President Sepp Blatter as stating that other nations could host some matches during the World Cup. However, no specific countries were named in the report. +more Blatter added that any such decision must be taken by Qatar first and then endorsed by FIFA's executive committee. Prince Ali bin Al Hussein of Jordan told the Australian Associated Press that holding games in Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, and possibly Saudi Arabia would help to incorporate the people of the region during the tournament.

    According to a report released in April 2013 by Merrill Lynch, the investment banking division of Bank of America, the organisers in Qatar have requested FIFA to approve a smaller number of stadiums due to the growing costs. +moreP. '>Bloomberg. com said that Qatar wishes to cut the number of venues to eight or nine from the twelve originally planned.

    Although, by April 2017, FIFA had yet to finalise the number of stadiums Qatar must have readied in five years' time, Qatar's Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy said it expected there would be eight in and near Doha (with the exception of Al Khor).

    In January 2019, Infantino said that FIFA was exploring the possibility of having neighbouring countries host matches during the tournament, in order to reduce political tensions.

    The most used stadium will be the Lusail Iconic Stadium, which will host 10 matches, including the final. The Al Bayt Stadium in Al Khor will host 9 matches. +more All but the 9 matches hosted in Al Khor in this tournament will be held within a 20-mile (32 km) radius of the center of Doha. For the first time ever, all venues used for this tournament will be used for knockout-round matches.

    Stadium 974, formerly known as Ras Abu Aboud, is the seventh FIFA World Cup 2022 venue to be completed by the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy (SC). Its name comes from the number of shipping containers used in its construction and Qatar's international dialling code. +more The stadium will host seven matches during the event.

    LusailAl KhorDoha
    Lusail Iconic StadiumAl Bayt StadiumStadium 974Al Thumama Stadium
    Capacity: 80,000Capacity: 60,000Capacity: 40,000Capacity: 40,000
    Host cities in QatarStadiums in Doha area
    Al RayyanAl Wakrah
    Khalifa International StadiumEducation City StadiumAhmad bin Ali StadiumAl Janoub Stadium
    Capacity: 45,416Capacity: 45,350Capacity: 44,740Capacity: 40,000

    Team base camps

    Base camps will be used by the 32 national squads to stay and train before and during the World Cup tournament. On July 27, 2022, FIFA announced the hotels and training sites for each participating team. +more This World Cup is the most compact since the inaugural edition in 1930, as 24 of the 32 teams are within a 10km radius of each other and are concentrated within the Doha area. It is also the first instalment since 1930 where players will not need to take flights to matches, and can remain at the same training base throughout the entire tournament.

    TeamsHotelsTraining Sites
    Qatar University Hostel 1Qatar University Stadium Training Site 3
    New Aspire Academy Athlete Accommodation, Aspire ZoneAspire Zone Training Facilities 5
    Hilton Salwa Beach Resort & Villas, Abu SamraSalwa Training Site, Abu Samra
    The Westin Doha Hotel & Spa, Bin MahmoudGrand Hamad Stadium, New Salata
    Banyan Tree Doha At La Cigale Mushaireb, MusheirebHamad bin Khalifa Stadium, Nuaija
    Century Premier Hotel, LusailSuheim bin Hamad Stadium, Lekhwair
    dusitD2 Salwa Doha, Al MuntazahHamad bin Khalifa Stadium, Nuaija
    Hilton Doha, Al DafnaAl Ersal Training Site 3
    Retaj Salwa Resort & Spa, Abu NakhlaAl-Sailiya SC 2
    Hyatt Regency Oryx Hotel, Al Matar Al QadeemAl-Mesaimeer Sports Club Training Facilities
    Souq Al Wakra Hotel Qatar by Tivoli, Al WakrahSaoud bin Abdulrahman Stadium, Al Wakrah
    Al Messila: A Luxury Collection Resort & Spa, Al MessilaJassim Bin Hamad Stadium, Al Sadd
    Zulal Wellness Resort by Chiva-Som, Al RuwaisAl-Shamal Stadium
    DoubleTree by Hilton Doha - Al SaddAspire Zone Training Facilities 1
    Al Rayyan Hotel Doha - Curio Collection by Hilton, Rawdat Al JahhaniyaAl-Rayyan SC Training Facilities 1
    Radisson Blu Hotel Doha, Al MuntazahAl-Sadd SC New Training Facilities 1
    Simaisma: A Murwab Resort, SimaismaAl-Khor SC Stadium
    Wyndham Doha West Bay, Al DafnaAbdullah bin Khalifa Stadium, Duhail
    The St. Regis Doha, Al QassarQatar University Stadium Training Site 6
    Ezdan Palace Hotel, DuhailAl Kharaitiyat SC Training Facilities, Umm Salal Ali
    Al Samriya Autograph Collection Hotels, Al ShahaniyahAl Shahaniya SC Training Facilities, Nuaija
    Al Aziziyah Boutique Hotel, Al AziziyaAspire Zone Training Facilities 3
    Sealine Beach: A Murwab Resort, MesaieedSealine Training Site, Mesaieed
    Duhail Handball Sports Hall HotelAl-Duhail SC 2
    Rixos Gulf Hotel Doha, Ras Abu AboudAl-Arabi SC Training Facilities, New Salata
    Le Méridien City Center, Doha, Al DafnaAl Egla Training Site 1
    Qatar University Hostel 2Qatar University Stadium Training Site 1
    Le Royal Méridien Doha, LusailUniversity of Doha Training Facilities
    Wyndham Grand Doha West Bay Beach, Al DafnaAl Egla Training Site 3
    Marsa Malaz Kempinski, The PearlThani bin Jassim Stadium, Al Gharrafa
    Pullman Doha West Bay, Al DafnaAl Ersal Training Site 1
    Delta Hotels by Marriott City Center Doha, Al DafnaAl-Sadd SC New Training Facilities 2

    Schedule

    Unlike previous FIFA World Cups, which are typically played in June and July, the 2022 World Cup will be played in November and December to avoid the intense Qatari summer heat. As a result, the World Cup will be unusually staged in the middle of the seasons of domestic football leagues which start in late July or August, including all of the major European leagues, which have been obliged to incorporate extended breaks into their domestic schedules to accommodate the World Cup. +more Major European competitions have scheduled their respective competitions group matches to be played before the World Cup, in order to avoid playing group matches the following year. In contrast, domestic leagues which typically start their seasons in the northern spring and play through the summer will be able to conclude their seasons before the start of the tournament.

    The match schedule was confirmed by FIFA on 15 July 2020. The group stage was set to begin on 21 November, with four matches every day; later, the schedule was tweaked by moving the Qatar vs Ecuador game to 20 November, after Qatar successfully lobbied FIFA to allow their team to open the tournament. +more The kick-off times are 13:00, 16:00, 19:00, and 22:00 for the first two rounds of the group stage, and 18:00 and 22:00 for the simultaneous kick-offs of the last round and for knockout stage matches. The third-place match will be played on 17 December 2022 at the Khalifa International Stadium, and the final will be played on 18 December 2022 at the Lusail Iconic Stadium, both at 18:00.

    Unlike previous tournaments where the match venues and kick-off times for each fixture are set prior to the draw, the assignment of group fixtures for each matchday to a specific venue and kick-off time was only made after the group stage draw and the teams of each specific fixture were known. This was due to the close proximity of the venues, which allowed the organisers to optimise stadium allocation for spectators and kick-off times for television audiences. +more The only group stage fixture with a venue and time confirmed was Qatar's first match, then meant to kick off at the Al Bayt Stadium on 21 November at 19:00.

    The matches for each group were allocated to the following stadiums: * Groups A, B, E, F: Al Bayt Stadium, Khalifa International Stadium, Al Thumama Stadium, Ahmad bin Ali Stadium * Groups C, D, G, H: Lusail Iconic Stadium, Stadium 974, Education City Stadium, Al Janoub Stadium

    FIFA confirmed the group stage venue and kick-off times on 1 April 2022, following the draw. On 11 August, it was confirmed that Qatar vs Ecuador had been brought forward one day, now becoming the tournament's opening match, while Senegal vs Netherlands, which would have opened the tournament under the original schedule, had been reallocated to the freed-up timeslot.

    Group stage

    Tie-breaking criteria for group play
    The ranking of teams in the group stage is determined as follows: # Points obtained in all group matches; # Goal difference in all group matches; # Number of goals scored in all group matches; # Points obtained in the matches played between the teams in question; # Goal difference in the matches played between the teams in question; # Number of goals scored in the matches played between the teams in question; # Fair play points in all group matches (only one deduction can be applied to a player in a single match): # Drawing of lots.

    Group A

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    Group B

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    Group C

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    Group D

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    Group E

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    Group F

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    Group G

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    Group H

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    Knockout stage

    In the knockout stage, if a match is level at the end of normal playing time, extra time is played (two periods of 15 minutes each) and followed, if necessary, by a penalty shoot-out to determine the winners.

    Bracket

    Round of 16

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    Quarter-finals

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    Semi-finals

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    Third place play-off

    Final

    Prize money

    In April 2022, FIFA announced the prizes for all participating nations. Each qualified team will also receive 1. +more5 million USD before the competition to cover preparation costs. This editions' total prize pool is 40 million USD greater than the prize pool of the previous tournament, which was 400 million USD.

    PlaceAmount (million USD)
    Per teamTotal
    Champions4242
    Runners-up3030
    Third place2727
    Fourth place2525
    5th-8th place (quarter-finals)1768
    9th-16th place (Round of 16)13104
    17th-32nd place (Group stage)9144
    Total440

    Marketing

    Branding

    The official emblem was designed by Lisbon-based Brandia Central branding agency and unveiled on 3 September 2019 during simultaneous events at the Doha Tower, Katara Cultural Village Amphitheatre, Msheireb Downtown Doha, and Zubarah. It is designed to resemble the tournament trophy, the infinity symbol, and the number "8", reflecting upon the "interconnected" event and the eight host stadiums. +more It also evokes imagery of shawls to signify the tournament's winter scheduling, and contains waves resembling desert dunes. The typography of the emblem's wordmark incorporates kashida-the practice of elongating certain parts of characters in Arabic script to provide typographical emphasis.

    Merchandise

    Electronic Arts are expected to release the 2022 FIFA World Cup DLC in their video game FIFA 23 on 9 November 2022. The expansion will include a World Cup tournament mode with all teams and stadiums from the event, official television presentation elements, and theming, a multiplayer online tournament mode. +more Instead of being connected to FIFA Ultimate Team, the DLC will include a "World Cup Live" mode, which will presumably let players emulate that day's matches.

    On 24 August 2022, Panini produced themed stickers and a sticker album for a 14th consecutive World Cup. Collectors are meant to open player packs and use them to fill their sticker book with all 32 participating teams. +more This year, rare cards with colored borders "parallels" can be found, and can be collected, traded, or sold.

    Broadcasting rights

    In May 2022, Infantino projected that the 2022 FIFA World Cup could be the most-watched in its history, with a global audience of at least 5 billion; the 2018 tournament was seen by 3.57 billion across the tournament.

    The various controversies surrounding the World Cup in Qatar has led to questions over how the tournament will be covered in the media, and whether they will be discussed or addressed during coverage. David Neal, executive producer for U. +moreS. English rightsholder Fox Sports, stated that the broadcaster did not plan to cover issues that are "ancillary" to the tournament unless they "become prevalent and apparent", saying that "[viewers] don't come to us expecting us to be Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel, or E:60".

    In February 2015, FIFA extended its media rights contracts in Canada and the United States with Bell Media (Canada), Fox (U. S. +more English), and NBCUniversal (U. S. Spanish) to last through 2026, without taking any competing offers. The New York Times reported that this decision was likely intended as compensation for the rescheduling of the 2022 World Cup, as the new scheduling places the tournament in competition with major professional sports leagues in North America, such as the NFL.

    Sponsorship

    FIFA partnersFIFA World Cup sponsorsAfrican and Middle Eastern supportersNorth American supportersSouth American supporters
    Adidas * Coca-Cola * Hyundai-Kia * Qatar Airways * QatarEnergy * Visa * Wanda GroupAnheuser-Busch InBev *Byju's *+morecom'>Crypto. com * Hisense *McDonald's *Mengniu Dairy * VivoGWC Logistics * Ooredoo *QNB GroupAlgorand * Frito-Lay * The Look CompanyClaro * Nubank *UPL
    .

    Symbols

    Mascot

    The tournament's official mascot was unveiled on 1 April 2022, during the group stage draw. Its name is Laeeb, which is an Arabic word meaning "super-skilled player". +more The official website of FIFA says: "Laeeb will be known for his youthful spirit; spreading joy and confidence everywhere he goes", and the official backstory of the character, published there, claims that it comes from a parallel world where tournament mascots live, "a world where ideas and creativity form the basis of characters that live in the minds of everyone".

    Match ball

    The official match ball, the "Al Rihla", was unveiled on 30 March 2022. It was mainly inspired by the culture, architecture, iconic boats and flag of Qatar. +more In Arabic, the word Al Rihla means "the journey". The ball was designed with sustainability as a priority, making it the first ever official match ball created with water-based glues and inks.

    As "the game is getting faster" and "speeds up", Adidas used some new features, allowing to provide speed and improve the accuracy of the ball.

    Music

    For the first time, a full FIFA World Cup official soundtrack has been released, instead of one official song.

    The first song of the album is "Hayya Hayya (Better Together)", performed by Trinidad Cardona, Davido and AISHA, released on 1 April 2022 along with the music video.

    The second song is "Arhbo", performed by Gims and Ozuna, released on 19 August 2022 along with the music video.

    The third song is "Light The Sky" performed by Nora Fatehi, Manal, Rahma Riad and Balqees. Composed by RedOne and released on 7 October 2022 along with the music video.

    Controversies

    A number of groups and media outlets have expressed concern over the suitability of Qatar to host the event, with regard to interpretations of human rights, particularly worker conditions and the rights of fans in the LGBT community because of the illegality of homosexuality in Qatar. In December 2020, Qatar allowed the rainbow flags at the 2022 World Cup. +more Hassan Abdulla al Thawadi, chief executive of the country's 2022 World Cup bid, said that Qatar would permit alcohol consumption during the event, even though drinking in public is not permitted, as the country's legal system is based on Sharia.

    The selection of Qatar as the host country has been controversial; FIFA officials were accused of corruption and allowing Qatar to "buy" the World Cup, the treatment of construction workers was called into question by human rights groups, and the high costs needed to make the plans a reality were criticised. The climate conditions caused some to call hosting the tournament in Qatar infeasible, with initial plans for air-conditioned stadiums giving way to a potential date switch from summer to winter.

    In May 2014, Sepp Blatter, who was FIFA president at the time of the selection but later banned for illegal payments, remarked that awarding the World Cup to Qatar was a "mistake" because of the extreme heat. However, while addressing delegates from African and Asian confederations, Blatter said allegations of corruption and some of the criticism, including those from sponsors, were "very much linked to racism and discrimination".

    Migrant workers, slavery allegations and deaths

    The issue of migrant workers' rights also attracted attention, with a 2013 investigation by The Guardian newspaper claiming that many workers were denied food and water, had their identity papers taken away from them, and that they were not paid on time or at all, making some of them effectively slaves. The Guardian estimated that, by the time the competition would be held, without reforms of the kafala system, out of the 2 million-strong migrant workforce up to 4,000 workers could die due to lax safety and other causes. +more These claims were based upon the fact that 522 Nepalese workers and over 700 Indian workers had died since 2010, when Qatar's bid as World Cup's host had been won, about 250 Indian workers dying each year. Given that there were half a million Indian workers in Qatar, the Indian government said that was quite a normal number of deaths.

    In 2015, a crew of four journalists from the BBC were arrested and held for two days after they attempted to report on the condition of workers in the country. The reporters had been invited to visit the country as guests of the Government of Qatar.

    The Wall Street Journal reported in June 2015 the International Trade Union Confederation's claim that over 1,200 workers had died while working on infrastructure and real-estate projects related to the World Cup, and the Qatar Government's counter-claim that none had. The BBC later reported that this often-cited figure of 1,200 workers having died in World Cup construction in Qatar between 2011 and 2013 is not correct, and that the 1,200 number is instead representing deaths from all Indians and Nepalese working in Qatar, not just of those workers involved in the preparation for the World Cup, and not just of construction workers. +more Most Qatari nationals avoid doing manual work or low-skilled jobs; additionally, they are given preference at the workplace. Michael van Praag, president of the Royal Dutch Football Association, requested the FIFA Executive Committee to pressure Qatar over those allegations to ensure better workers' conditions. He also stated that a new vote on the attribution of the World Cup to Qatar would have to take place if the corruption allegations were to be proved.

    In March 2016, Amnesty International accused Qatar of using forced labour, forcing the employees to live in poor conditions, and withholding their wages and passports. It also accused FIFA of failing to stop the stadium from being built on "human right abuses. +more" Migrant workers told Amnesty about verbal abuse and threats they received after complaining about not being paid for up to several months. Nepali workers were even denied leave to visit their family after the 2015 Nepal earthquake.

    In October 2017, the International Trade Union Confederation said that Qatar had signed an agreement to improve the situation of more than 2 million migrant workers in the country. According to the ITUC, the agreement provided for establishing substantial reforms in labour system, including ending the Kafala system. +more The ITUC also stated that the agreement would positively affect the general situation of workers, especially those who work on the 2022 FIFA World Cup infrastructure projects. The workers will no longer need their employer's permission to leave the country or change their jobs.

    In February 2019, Amnesty International questioned whether Qatar would complete the promised labour reforms before the start of the World Cup, a sentiment that FIFA backed. Amnesty International found that abuses were still occurring despite the nation taking some steps to improve labour rights.

    In May 2019, an investigation by the UK's Daily Mirror newspaper discovered some of the 28,000 workers on the stadiums are being paid 750 Qatari Riyal per month, which is equivalent to £190 per month or 99 pence an hour for a typical 48-hour week.

    Hendriks Graszoden, the turf supplier for the 2006 World Cup and for the European Championships in 2008 and 2016, refused to supply Qatar with World Cup turf. According to company spokesperson Gerdien Vloet, one reason for this decision was the accusations of human rights abuses.

    In April 2020, the government of Qatar provided $824 million to pay the wages of migrant workers in quarantine or undergoing treatment for COVID-19.

    In August 2020, the Qatari government announced a monthly minimum wage for all workers of 1,000 riyals (US$275), an increase from the previous temporary minimum wage of 750 riyals a month. The new laws went into effect in March 2021. +more The International Labour Organization said "Qatar is the first country in the region to introduce a non-discriminatory minimum wage, which is a part of a series of historical reforms of the country's labour laws," while the campaign group Migrant Rights said the new minimum wage was too low to meet migrant workers' need with Qatar's high cost of living. In addition, employers are obligated to pay 300 riyals for food and 500 riyals for accommodation, if they do not provide employees with these directly. The No Objection Certificate was removed so that employees can change jobs without consent of the current employer. A Minimum Wage Committee was also formed to check on the implementation. These reforms removed the kafala system and a contractual system was introduced.

    In March 2021, an investigative report published by The Guardian used data from embassies and national foreign employment offices to estimate migrant worker death toll since World Cup was awarded to Qatar. Between 2010 and late 2020 over 6,500 migrant workers from India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nepal and Sri Lanka have died in Qatar.

    At the 2022 FIFA Congress in Doha, Lise Klaveness-head of the Norwegian Football Federation-criticised the organisation for having awarded the World Cup to Qatar, citing the various controversies surrounding the tournament. She argued that "in 2010 World Cups were awarded by FIFA in unacceptable ways with unacceptable consequences. +more Human rights, equality, democracy: the core interests of football were not in the starting XI until many years later. These basic rights were pressured onto the field as substitutes by outside voices. FIFA has addressed these issues but there's still a long way to go. " Hassan al-Thawadi, secretary general of Qatar 2022, criticised her remarks for ignoring the country's recent labour reforms.

    The European Union's Annual Report on Human Rights and Democracy in the World 2021 noted Qatar's labour law reforms had incorporated non-discriminatory minimum wage systems and removal of the Kafala system in 2021.

    In March 2022, FIFA president Gianni Infantino claimed in an interview that the Gulf nation is being progressive in terms of the labour rights and migrant rights issues that prevailed previously, adding "I am pleased to see the strong commitment from the Qatari authorities to ensure the reforms are fully implemented across the labour market, leaving a lasting legacy of the FIFA World Cup long after the event, and benefiting migrant workers in the host country in the long term."

    In October 2022, France 24 broadcast a report titled "The plight of migrant workers in Qatar", adding more details to the controversy and how many reform laws have not been followed.

    Move to November and December

    Owing to the climate in Qatar, concerns were expressed over holding the World Cup in its traditional timeframe of June and July. In October 2013, a task force was commissioned to consider alternative dates and report after the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil. +more On 24 February 2015, the FIFA Task Force proposed that the tournament be played from late November to late December 2022, to avoid the summer heat between May and September and also avoid clashing with the 2022 Winter Olympics in February, the 2022 Winter Paralympics in March and Ramadan in April.

    The notion of staging the tournament in November is controversial since it would interfere with the regular season schedules of some domestic leagues around the world. Commentators have noted the clash with the Western Christmas season is likely to cause disruption, whilst there is concern about how short the tournament is intended to be. +more FIFA executive committee member Theo Zwanziger said that awarding the 2022 World Cup to Qatar's desert state was a "blatant mistake". Frank Lowy, chairman of Football Federation Australia, said that if the 2022 World Cup were moved to November and thus upset the schedule of the A-League, they would seek compensation from FIFA. Richard Scudamore, chief executive of the Premier League, stated that they would consider legal action against FIFA because a move would interfere with the Premier League's popular Christmas and New Year fixture programme. On 19 March 2015, FIFA sources confirmed that the final would be played on 18 December.

    Bidding corruption allegations

    Qatar has faced growing pressure over its hosting of the World Cup in relation to allegations over the role of former top football official Mohammed bin Hammam played in securing the bid. A former employee of the Qatar bid team alleged that several African officials were paid $1. +more5 million by Qatar. She retracted her claims, but later said that she was coerced to do so by Qatari bid officials. In March 2014, it was discovered that disgraced former CONCACAF president Jack Warner and his family were paid almost $2 million from a firm linked to Qatar's successful campaign. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is investigating Warner and his alleged links to the Qatari bid.

    Five of FIFA's six primary sponsors, Sony, Adidas, Visa, Hyundai, and Coca-Cola, have called upon FIFA to investigate the claims. +more The Sunday Times published bribery allegations based on a leak of millions of secret documents. Jim Boyce, vice-president of FIFA, has gone on record stating he would support a re-vote to find a new host if the corruption allegations are proven. FIFA completed a lengthy investigation into these allegations and a report cleared Qatar of any wrongdoing. Despite the claims, the Qataris insist that the corruption allegations are being driven by envy and mistrust while Sepp Blatter said it is fuelled by racism in the British media.

    In the 2015 FIFA corruption case, Swiss officials, operating under information from the United States Department of Justice, arrested many senior FIFA officials in Zurich, Switzerland. They also seized physical and electronic records from FIFA's main headquarters. +more The arrests continued in the United States, where several FIFA officers were arrested, and FIFA buildings were raided. The arrests were made on the information of at least a $150 million (USD) corruption and bribery scandal.

    On 7 June 2015, Phaedra Almajid, the former media officer for the Qatar bid team, claimed that the allegations would result in Qatar not hosting the World Cup. In an interview published on the same day, Domenico Scala, the head of FIFA's Audit and Compliance Committee, stated that "should there be evidence that the awards to Qatar and Russia came only because of bought votes, then the awards could be cancelled. +more".

    Qatar diplomatic crisis

    On 5 June 2017, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen cut diplomatic ties with Qatar, accusing it of destabilising the region and supporting terrorist groups. Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Mauritania, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, and Egypt, in a letter, asked FIFA to replace Qatar as World Cup Host, calling the country as a "base of terrorism". +more In October 2017, Lieutenant General Dhahi Khalfan Tamim, deputy head of Dubai Police and General Security, wrote about the crisis on Twitter in Arabic; saying "If the World Cup leaves Qatar, Qatar's crisis will be over … because the crisis is created to get away from it". According to media reports, the message appeared to imply that the Saudi-led blockade of Qatar was only enacted due to Qatar hosting the world's biggest football event. In reaction to media coverage of his tweet, Dhahi Khalfan tweeted; "I said Qatar is faking a crisis and claims it's besieged so it could get away from the burdens of building expensive sports facilities for the World Cup". UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash said Dhahi Khalfan had been misunderstood in media coverage. In response, Gargash clarified that Qatar's hosting of World Cup 2022 "should include a repudiation of policies supporting extremism & terrorism. ".

    Russian participation

    On 9 December 2019, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) handed Russia a four-year ban from all major sporting events, after RUSADA was found non-compliant for handing over manipulated lab data to investigators. The Russian national team were still permitted to enter qualification, as the ban only applied to the final tournament to decide the world champions. +more A team representing Russia, which uses the Russian flag and anthem, could not participate under the WADA decision whilst the ban is active. The decision was appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, and on 17 December 2020, Russian teams were banned from competing at world championships organised or sanctioned by a WADA signatory until 16 December 2022, the day before the third-place playoff.

    Russia's participation was further thrown into doubt after the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine. On 24 February, the three teams in Russia's qualifying path Czech Republic, Poland, and Sweden announced their unwillingness to play any matches in Russian territory. +more The boycott was extended on 26 February by Poland and Sweden to any qualifying games at all, and the same decision was made by the Czech Republic one day later.

    On 27 February 2022, FIFA announced a number of sanctions impacting Russia's participation in international football. Russia was prohibited from hosting international competitions, and the national team had been ordered to play all home matches behind closed doors in neutral countries. +more Under these sanctions, Russia would not be allowed to compete under the country's name, flag, or national anthem; similarly to the Russian athletes' participation in events such as the Olympics, the team would compete under the abbreviation of their national federation, the Russian Football Union ("RFU"), rather than "Russia". The next day, however, FIFA decided to suspend Russia from international competitions "until further notice", including its participation in the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

    LGBT rights

    Concerns have been raised about the rights of members of the LGBT community who attend the tournament, as homosexuality is illegal in Qatar, and also punishable by death for Muslims under Sharia. After Qatar was chosen as host, Blatter was criticised for jokingly telling a reporter inquiring about these concerns that gay attendees "should refrain from any sexual activities". +more In apology for the statement, Blatter assured that FIFA did not tolerate discrimination, and stated that "what we want to do is open this game to everybody, and to open it to all cultures, and this is what we are doing in 2022. " In 2013, Hassan al-Thawadi stated that everyone would be welcome at Qatar 2022, but warned against public displays of affection because they were "not part of our culture and tradition".

    In November 2021, Australian footballer Josh Cavallo, who came out as gay in October 2021, said he would be afraid to travel to Qatar to play. Nasser Al Khater, head of the tournament's organising committee, replied that Cavallo would be "welcome" in the country.

    Qatari officials initially stated in December 2020 that, in accordance with FIFA's inclusion policy, it would not restrict the display of pro-LGBT imagery and symbols (such as rainbow flags) at matches during the World Cup. However, in April 2022, a senior security official overseeing the tournament stated that there were plans to confiscate pride flags from spectators-allegedly as a safety measure to protect them from altercations with spectators that are anti-LGBT. +more Fare network criticised the report, arguing that actions against the LGBT community by the state were of a greater concern to those attending the World Cup than the actions of individuals.

    Women's rights

    In the course of organising the World Cup, a Mexican employee of the World Cup Organizing Committee (WM-OC) was accused of allegedly having sex outside of marriage. The woman had previously reported rape. +more However, the accused of her claimed to have been in a relationship with her, after which the Mexican woman was investigated for extramarital sex. Women in Qatar, where the Sharia is the main source of legislation, face the possible penalty of flagellation and a seven-year prison sentence if convicted for having sex outside of marriage. The criminal case against the WM-OC employee was dropped months after she was allowed to leave Qatar.

    Notes

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