FIFA World Cup 2022: Guide to Stadiums and Fixtures

The stadiums are ready, the draw is complete, and the schedule is out. The FIFA World Cup 2022 will be like no other. There were 3 out 32 slots empty in an unprecedented draw held on 1 April 2022. However, the tournament organisers followed the schedule and completed the draw on the scheduled date.   

The draw is not all, many unusual activities are happening for the first time at this mega event since the inception of the football World Cup back in 1930. Firstly, Qatar becomes the first Arab world nation to host the world cup. This tournament will also be the first World Cup held in November and December. Also, the stadiums are equipped with climate-controlling technology features to counter the Qatari heat.

Now, the football fans eagerly wait for November to see their favourite teams compete for the bragging rights of being called the World Champions. While there is still some time to kill, you can read all the vital information so far. From the World Cup 2022 finals draw to the stadiums and schedule, this guide is the only thing you need to know about what happens next.

Final Draw

The group stage draw for the World Cup 2022 finals was held in Doha and it yielded the following outcome.

Group AQatar (Host)EcuadorNetherlandsSenegal
Group BEnglandIranUSAEuro Play-off
Group CArgentinaMexicoPolandSaudi Arabia
Group DFrance (Champion)DenmarkTunisiaIC Play-Off 1
Group ESpainGermanyJapanIC Play-Off 2
Group FBelgiumCanadaCroatiaMorocco
Group GBrazilCameroonSerbiaSwitzerland
Group HPortugalGhanaSouth KoreaUruguay

The top two teams from each group will proceed into the Round of 16 stages. 

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Which Team can still Qualify for the World Cup 2022 finals?

As evident from the draw, there are still three spots left. Out of eight teams competing for the spots in the mega event, only 3 can qualify. Here is the schedule for the final playoffs.

Euro Play-off (EP)Wales vs. Scotland/Ukraine5 June 2022
IC Play-Off 1 (ICP1)Australia/UAE vs. Peru13 June 2022
IC Play-Off 2 (ICP2)Costa Rica vs. New Zealand14 June 2022
Note: The dates of the play-off matches may change

FIFA World Cup 2022 Stadiums

Qatar constructed 7 new stadiums for the tournament while one underwent extensive renovation to gear up to host the FIFA World Cup 2022. All the stadiums are less than an hour from the capital city of Doha. A total of 8 venues will host 64 matches of the World Cup 2022 finals in Qatar.

1 – Khalifa International Stadium

Khalifa International Stadium is the most iconic arena in Qatar that has been around since 1976. It is the only stadium not built from scratch. The stadium reopened in 2017 after the renovation was completed. It is located in the capital city of Doha and is easily accessible.

Capacity: 40,000

No. of Matches: 6 group stage matches, 1 Round of 16, and the third-place match.

DateMatch
21 November 2022England vs. Iran
23 November 2022Germany vs Japan
25 November 2022Netherlands vs Ecuador
27 November 2022Croatia vs Canada
29 November 2022Ecuador vs Senegal
1 December 2022Japan vs Spain
3 December 20221A vs 2B (Round of 16)
17 December 2022Loser SF-1 vs Loser SF-2 (Third-place Match)

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2 – Al Bayt Stadium

Located 60 km from Doha, Al Bayt Stadium is the farthest stadium from the capital Doha. Fans can reach the stadium by road with taxis and buses. The stadium is designed in the shape of a tent used by the Bedouin people, a nomadic group living across the Arab for centuries.

Capacity: 60,000

No. of Matches: 6 group stage matches, 1 Round of 16, 1 Quarter-final, and 1 Semi-final match.

DateMatch
21 November 2022Qatar vs Ecuador
23 November 2022Morocco vs Croatia
25 November 2022England vs USA
27 November 2022Spain vs Germany
29 November 2022Netherlands vs Qatar
1 December 2022ICP2 vs Germany
4 December 20221B vs 2A (Round of 16)
10 December 20221B/2A vs 1D/2C (QF-3)
14 December 2022Winner QF-3 vs Winner QF-4 (Semi-Final 2)

3 – Al Thumama Stadium

The design of this stadium was inspired by the Ghafiya, the traditional woven cap worn by Arab males. Al Thumama Stadium is connected with central Doha by a purpose-built metro line to help fans reach the venue without much trouble.

Capacity: 40,000 

No. of Matches: 6 group stage matches, 1 Round of 16, and 1 Quarter-final match.

DateMatch
21 November 2022Senegal vs Netherlands
21 November 2022Spain vs ICP2
21 November 2022Qatar vs Senegal
21 November 2022Belgium vs Morocco
21 November 2022Iran vs USA
1 December 2022Canada vs Morocco
4 December 20221D vs 2C (Round of 16)
10 December 20221F/2E vs 1H/2G (QF-4)

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4 – Al-Rayyan Stadium

Al-Rayyan Stadium was built on the site of the old Ahmad bin Ali Stadium in one of Qatar’s historic cities of Al Rayyan. The stadium sits on the edge of the desert and allows visitors to get a glimpse of Qatar’s deep cultural roots. Located just a few kilometres from Doha, it is one of the easily accessible stadiums outside Doha.

Capacity: 40,000

No. of Matches: 6 group stage and 1 Round of 16 matches.

DateMatch
21 November 2022USA vs EP
23 November 2022Belgium vs Canada
25 November 2022EP vs Iran
27 November 2022Japan vs ICP2
29 November 2022EP vs England
1 December 2022Croatia vs Belgium
3 December 20221C vs 2D (Round of 16)

5 – Al Janou Stadium

Located 20 kilometres from Doha, Al Janou Stadium is connected to Doha by a purpose-built metro line for the benefit of the fans. The stadium is built using the traditional materials and timber of the Arabian Peninsula.

Capacity: 40,000

No. of Matches: 6 group stage and 1 Round of 16 matches.

DateMatch
22 November 2022France vs ICP1
24 November 2022Switzerland vs Cameroon
26 November 2022Tunisia vs ICP1
28 November 2022Cameroon vs Serbia
30 November 2022ICP1 vs Denmark
2 December 2022Ghana vs Uruguay
5 December 20221E vs 2F (Round of 16)

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6 – Stadium 974

Located in Ras Abu Aboud, Doha, on the shores of the Gulf, Stadium 974 is constructed from shipping containers and other recycled materials with the intent to dismantle the stadium after the World Cup 2022 finals. Fans can reach this waterside stadium by taking a short metro ride from downtown Doha.

Capacity: 40,000

No. of Matches: 6 group stage and 1 Round of 16 matches.

DateMatch
22 November 2022Mexico vs Poland
24 November 2022Portugal vs Ghana
26 November 2022France vs Denmark
28 November 2022Brazil vs Switzerland
30 November 2022Poland vs Argentina
2 December 2022Serbia vs Switzerland
5 December 20221G vs 2H (Round of 16)

7 – Education City Stadium

The stadium is named after its location within the Qatar Foundation’s Education City. The arena is designed as a jagged diamond that will glitter by day and glow by night. Located just 7 kilometres from downtown Doha, fans will find easy access to the stadium by road or metro.

Capacity: 40,000

No. of Matches: 6 group stage matches, 1 Round of 16, and 1 Quarter-final match.

DateMatch
22 November 2022Denmark vs Tunisia
24 November 2022Uruguay vs South Korea
26 November 2022Poland vs Saudi Arabia
28 November 2022South Korea vs Ghana
30 November 2022Tunisia vs France
2 December 2022South Korea vs Portugal
6 December 20221F vs 2E (Round of 16)
9 December 20221E/2F vs 1G/2H (QF-2)

8 – Lusail Iconic Stadium

Lusail Iconic Stadium is a part of a planned Lusail city, constructed specially for the FIFA World Cup 2022. The city houses a wide array of facilities to cater to fans’ needs. Also, the stadium is well served by a direct metro from Doha, making it easy for fans to commute. The stadium will host the opening game and the final of the event. 

Capacity: 86,000

No. of Matches: 6 group stage matches, 1 Round of 16, 1 Quarter-final, 1 Semi-final, and the Final matches.

DateMatch
22 November 2022Argentina vs Saudi Arabia
24 November 2022Brazil vs Serbia
26 November 2022Argentina vs Mexico
28 November 2022Portugal vs Uruguay
30 November 2022Saudi Arabia vs Mexico
2 December 2022Cameroon vs Brazil
6 December 20221H vs 2G (Round of 16)
9 December 20221A/2B vs 1C/2D (QF-1)
13 December 2022Winner QF-1 vs Winner QF-2 (Semi-Final-1)
18 December 2022Winner SF-1 vs Winner SF-2 (The Final)

So, between now and the start of FIFA World Cup 2022 in November, there is a lot of international and domestic football happening. The remaining five qualifying matches are in June 2022. Also, the UEFA Nations League is to start in June for European teams, while other confederations will also host friendly fixtures, during the international break in June and September.

The domestic leagues will continue as usual and will only cease after the season ends in May/June and a week or two before the World Cup 2022 gets underway. Usually, we would see teams play one or two warm-up matches in the build-up to the World Cup finals, but with the unusual timing of the event, the chances of those are slim.

Football fans all over the globe are praying for the mega event to go ahead as planned without any delays. They are all set for the action-packed football in 2022.

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