Qatar WC: Al Bayt to host opening game
Online Staff/GUWAHATI, July 15: Al Bayt Stadium, a 60,000-capacity arena, will hosts opening tie of FIFA World Cup on November 21, 2022. The match will kick off at 13:00 local time (15-30 IST) and host Qatar will appear in the opening tie.
The local kick-off times for group matches have been set for 13:00 (15-30 IST), 16:00 (18-30 IST), 19:00 (21-30 IST) and 22:00 (12-30 IST).
In a release FIFA said, Khalifa International Stadium will be the setting for the play-off for third place on 17 December. The final will kick off one day later at 18:00 (20-30 IST) at Lusail Stadium in front of an 80,000 crowd.
With the aim of providing all teams with optimal rest between their matches, the group stage will last 12 days and, with four matches per day, it promises a full and exciting schedule for fans. The tournament’s compact nature – with no air travel needed to move between the venues – will allow organisers, for the first time, to optimise specific match demands for the benefit and comfort of fans, teams and media.
This will be achieved through the assignment of the group fixtures for each match day to a stadium and kick-off time only after the final draw, currently planned for after the March 2022 international match calendar qualifying window. Once the pairings are known, the possibility will be discussed of providing a more beneficial kick-off time for audiences at home or indeed for fans in Qatar with regard to the stadium allocation.
That additional flexibility is possible without affecting any technical aspects since all stadiums are located within a compact radius and the climate is perfect at that time of year in Qatar, whether it is an early or a late kick-off. On top of that, this will potentially give fans the opportunity to attend more than one match a day during the group stage.
For those eager to book their seats at Qatar 2022, hospitality sales are scheduled to start in late 2020.
IMAGE CAPTION: Al Bayt Stadium, the venue of opening game (Courtesy:FIFA)