Four matches will be played each day during the group stage of the 2022 Qatar World Cup, FIFA has announced.
The group games will be played over a 12-day period, with matches not being assigned to particular venues until after the finals draw in March 2022 in order to choose optimal kickoff times to suit television audiences in different countries as well as supporters out in Qatar.
Kickoff times for the first two rounds of matches will be 1pm, 4pm, 7pm and 10pm local time, and with the stadiums all within a 40-mile radius of each other it will enable supporters and media to realistically attend two games on the same day.
For all but three games there will be a three-day rest period in between. There will also be no need for teams, supporters or media to spend time flying or taking long rail or road journeys between matches.
Kickoff times in the final round of group games and knockout round matches will be at 6pm and 10pm local time.
The tournament’s opening match will be played at the Al Bayt stadium in Al Khor on Monday, November 21 in a match which will feature the host country.
The 2022 final venue is the Lusail Stadium in Doha, with the showpiece game to be played on Sunday, December 18.
A start date has not yet been fixed for the European section of World Cup qualification. The announcement comes two years to the day since the 2018 World Cup final. Continue reading