What you need to know about Qatar on the way to the World Cup in 2022

The 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar will be the 22nd edition of the men's World Cup organised by FIFA. It will be held between 21 November and 18 December 2022 in Qatar, which obtained the organisational rights on 2 December 2010. The dates were decided because of the high temperatures during the summer, which made it virtually impossible to play under those conditions.

FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Stadium. Photo: EFE
FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Stadium. Photo: EFE

The XXII edition of the World Cup is called to be special, as it will take place between November 21 and December 18 for the first time in history, a change forced by the temperatures that can reach 50 º C in the months of June and July in Qatar.

Thus, the Christmas gift will arrive early and will show the world how technology will allow fans and athletes, through innovative and sustainable solutions, to live a World Cup as never seen before.

Within this innovation are mainly the eight stadiums built mostly from scratch, mega infrastructure works that will transmit the culture of a country that floats in the waters of the Persian Gulf.

It is the first world cup in a Middle Eastern country.

Doha's Khalifa International Stadium became the first air-conditioned stadium and the first to be ready for the event, first opened in 1976 for the Gulf Cup, but redesigned and reopened on 17 May.

"The completion of our first FIFA World Cup stadium is an important milestone for Qatar and reflects our commitment to deliver all proposed venues well in advance of the tournament," said Hassan Al Thawadi, Secretary-General of the Organising Committee.

Since then, Khalifa has become an icon of the city of Doha, which already hosted the recent IAAF World Athletics Championships in September and October 2019.

The other stadiums

In Qatar 2022, the world will see Ras Abu Aboud, the world's first and only stadium capable of being dismantled for transport and used for other sporting events. Worthy of a layman's game.

This stadium will be built with transport containers, removable seats and building blocks that will be an example of environmental sustainability and reduced production costs.

The third, Al Thumama, will be located in front of the waters of the gulf and will represent on its façade the ghafiya, clothing used by men throughout the Arab world. This stadium will donate after the World Cup, 20 thousand of its seats to countries with deficiencies in their sports infrastructure.

The Education City Stadium, built around universities and innovation centers, will be home to the third-place match and the final. With the possibility of accessing the stadium by subway or subway, it will be inaugurated this December 18 with the 2019 Club World Cup.

This will be the third time that the World Cup will be held in Asia after the 2002 World Cup in South Korea and Japan and Russia 2018 (although the latter had only one venue on Asian soil).

Al Bayt Stadium, with a capacity for 60,000 people in the city of Al Khor, will host the semi-finals and is expected to be completed by the end of this year. It has a typical tent design used by the nomadic peoples of Qatar and in addition to being portable, the upper-level seats will also be donated.

With the same name as the city, Al Rayyan Stadium will be the new home of the Al Rayyan Sports Club. This stadium will be a work of sustainability and responsibility for the environment, as it is being built with sustainable materials and its façade will represent the dunes of the Qatari desert.

The opening match will take place in the Lusail Stadium. One of the largest in the world, will be a community center at the end of the tournament and its construction is progressing in giant steps within a pioneering city in the planning of transportation system and green spaces.

High-tech facilities

Pleasant Arabic atmosphere for visitors

Flexible and very fast transport

Metro network, the fastest without a driver

Finally, Al Janoub Stadium in Al Wakrah was inaugurated on 16 May in the final of the 2019 Emir's Cup and will be an example of infrastructure, as its area will consist of restaurants, schools, markets, gyms, cycle paths, and even a wedding hall.

The Al Janoub grass broke the world record when it was installed in a time of nine hours and fifteen minutes.

A special World Cup deserves special planning, which is why all stadiums are expected to be ready by December 2020, along with 64 training grounds for the teams, which have progress of more than 80%.

Multimillion-dollar budget

Qatar 2022 will transform Doha and its surroundings to offer fans an unforgettable experience, so 79 kilometers of public transportation lines will be created, with trains connected to some stadiums and more than 30 new stops added to the metro system and railroad.

The budget managed for the development of the World Cup is six billion dollars, according to Hassan Al Thawadi, during the last St. Petersburg Economic Forum for the agency Sputnik.

The organization of the World Cup will mean for Qatar a tourist, structural and urban growth, because the transport systems, stadiums and training camps will be available for the next generations.

Qatar 2022. Image: EFE
Qatar 2022. Image: EFE

"Our main objective goes beyond the championship. We are working for the development of the country and investments in this field," he said.

Qatar 2022 will show how football can be sustainable and give a boost to a country that is growing, because the numbers explain it.

If in 2018 Qatar's gross domestic product grew by 1.5% compared to 2017, it can be assumed that this country will have a significant rise for GDP in 2023, taking into account the data obtained in the World Cup in Russia 2018, where the country had an economic impact of $15 billion dollars, about 1% of GDP.

In Russia, 220 thousand jobs were created and meant an increase of almost 7 billion dollars, but beyond the money, at a cultural level, Qatar 2022 will be a Football World Cup that will educate the world in sustainability, development, and technology, surely like no other.

It will be the shortest World Cup since 1978, lasting only 28 days as opposed to the usual 32 days in recent tournaments.

The most benefited will not only be the Qatari, but also the football leagues, players and entities that will be the protagonists of the biggest football party for the first time in an Arab country.

To attend the event, the leagues and clubs, which feed the teams with 75% of the players, will be challenged to adapt to a schedule that will be modified but will bring multiple benefits with the FIFA Club Aid Scheme.

As an example of this plan, after Russia 2018, 209 million dollars were paid to 416 football clubs in 63 federations, a remarkable increase of almost 200% compared to Brazil 2014.

The calendar has not yet been published, but with the World Cup starting and ending dates, the leagues will be able to plan alternatives to match the Qatari tournament.

The championship will last about a month and with the rest time of the called is likely to be no local tournament until early January, but with the eighth round of the Champions League until February and nurtured squads, the solutions will come as a sandstorm.

Travel plan

Qatar is a country with more than 2.7 million people of which only 20% are Qatari, something that allows the Arab country to be a stage for sharing cultures and traditions around football.

That being the case, getting one of the tickets to the matches is the main challenge for the millions of fans who will want to go to the World Cup.

In many cases, it is based on the luck of being one of the lucky ones whose applications were accepted by the organizing committee, in others the knowledge and experience to know the best time and way to make the application.

For the millions of requests, in certain periods of time FIFA opens ticket application processes through its website. The first so-called 'VISA Early Selling Phase' took place between 22 and 31 October 2019 for customers of VISA cards, the official sponsor of the World Cup.

The second, called 'Sale by Order of Application', began on 14 November and will end on 21 December, a process in which everyone can participate with any card as a means of payment.

From then on, the suspense and the expectation of being one of the winners of the draw of applicants begins. Subsequently, those who are accepted will receive their tickets electronically and these must be printed before going to the stadiums.

According to FIFA, the tickets are divided into categories and phases of the World Cup, which establishes the price of the tickets. In Russia 2018, a Category 1 match in the Round of 16 costs around $240, while the final cost $1,100.

If the budget doesn't fit, fans can consider volunteering. By Qatar 2022, some 265,000 people have signed up for the program, of which 12,000 signed up in just four hours.

With tickets waiting to be accepted, fans can plan and save for travel, lodging, food, and transportation.

For this, many travel agencies make tourist packages that include plane tickets, hotels, tours, and transportation to the stadiums, however, do not have the power to offer in their packages tickets to the games.

On the other hand, the decision to travel can be separated from a travel agency, and if the fan wants to do it on his own the trip can reach the thousand 100 dollars, including both trips and with the purchase of a year in advance.

Football fans will be able to watch up to two matches a day, because the local metro is the fastest in the world and they can be at the farthest stadium in up to 45 minutes.

The challenge for lodging will be to find the perfect rate adapted to the comforts and needs, given that the prices of hotels on booking platforms could double or triple their normal price.

Within the stadiums and communications plan, Qatar 2022 has been innovative and visionary in offering a unique experience to the fan, since none of the venues is more than 35 kilometers from the center of Doha and the longest distance between the stadiums will be 55 kilometers.

The most atypical World Cup will not only be marked by a strange date, but also by the customs that coexist within the country, some of them embodied in the official logo of the competition.

According to FIFA, the image represents "striking elements of regional and local Arab culture" and its eight-shape figure represents the eight stadiums that will host the matches, while at the same time emulating the desert dunes, the symbol of infinity and the silhouette of the coveted golden trophy.

For its culture, ancient music, renowned cuisine, and traditions, Qatar has been chosen to host the next World Cup, with the aim of sharing a little more of the Arab world in a country that has the third-largest natural gas reserve in the world and is number one in per capita GDP.

Its stadiums will be the most attractive, with imposing infrastructures such as the towers that invade the city, constantly hit by sandstorms coming from dunes crossed by camels.

Three years to go before Qatar 2022, an event that will prove that football can be innovative, sustainable, visionary and futuristic, capable of surprising in regulation or extra time, on the pitch or on the sand.

At risk of losing the headquarters

Many rumors have been spread in the media about the World Cup 2022, about whether Qatar is at risk of losing the venue. Qatar is collaborating with different organizations, with FIFA, and is benefiting from the experience of previous World Cups such as the 2018 World Cup in Russia, to ensure a successful, safe, and enjoyable World Cup for everyone without exceptions.

The country's challenges to overcome in order to become a great venue for a sporting event like this. Currently, the country is suffering a blockade from some neighboring countries since June 2017, when there was a break of diplomatic relations from Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates against Qatar, for political reasons one of them, the Qatar political strategy based on openness.

But Qatar has always shown its firm and an open position to dialogue, to solve any difference or problem because of that: World Cup 2022 authorities have confirmed that the blockade will not affect World Cup 2022, and that at the World Cup in Qatar everyone is welcome. The blockade has served to extend their trade relations with friendly countries.

What does Qatar have in store for the World Cup?

Qatar is preparing for a unique and safe World Cup for the fans. Last year four of the stadiums, where some of the games will be held, were completed, while this year four more are expected to be ready. Some of the buildings have innovative and ecological designs, they have hotels and restaurants, as well as one is inspired by an Arabian tent.

Qatar has started building high-tech stadiums, including the Lusail Stadium, which is intended to host the opening match and the grand final. The Lusail Stadium will accommodate a maximum of 80,000 fans and the intention is to build a city around it that can accommodate up to 270,000 residents.

ABOUT QATAR

It is an Arab country with a Muslim majority, as well as the smallest territorial extension. Qatar is a small country in the Arabian Gulf. Religion is Muslim. Qatar is an absolute monarchy that has been ruled by the Al Thani family since the mid-19th century.

Qatar has the third-largest natural gas reserves in the world, making the small emirate the country with the highest per capita income on the planet and leading it to achieve the highest human development index in the entire Arab world.

People: Qatar

Language: Arabic

Currency: Riyal catarí

Qatar ended 2018 with a population of 2,781,677

The country is characterized by its proximity, ease of movement. It has incredible sea views, spectacular dunes, natural reserves with endemic species. Traditional sports such as camel racing, falconry, and extreme desert and water sports are practiced.

Qatar has several important cities that historically stand out for their fishing and pearl collecting traditions. Main cities: Doha City, where you can still see traditional wooden boats in the sea, AL Wakrah City, Al Rayyan, Lusail, Al Jor among others.

Its economy is recognized as high income by the World Bank and also ranks nineteenth as the most peaceful country globally.

THE STADIUMS OF QATAR, THE "BEST IN THE WORLD" FOR MALCOLM

Zenit St. Petersburg's Brazilian player Malcolm Silva expressed to the media his admiration for the level of the stadiums that will host the next World Cup in Qatar in 2022. "I think they are the best stadiums in the world," he said in a statement collected by AS after the concentration of his team in Spain.

The World Cup in Qatar 2022 has a new champion. It is the Brazilian footballer Malcolm, now with Zenit St. Petersburg and previously with FC Barcelona. The attacker considered that the stadiums that will host the event "are the best in the world".
The World Cup in Qatar 2022 has a new champion. It is the Brazilian footballer Malcolm, now with Zenit St. Petersburg and previously with FC Barcelona. The attacker considered that the stadiums that will host the event "are the best in the world".

"I went to some sports facilities and the stadiums for the World Cup. They are perfect, I think they are the best in the world, as well as the Aspetar hospital, where many players from all countries have recovered," said AS after his team's training camp in Spain.

The player had the opportunity to visit the facilities during Zenit's stay in Qatar for a winter stage. "During the period I spent in the country I was totally convinced that Qatar is ready to host the 2022 World Cup", he added.

About the capital of this Arab state, Doha, the former FC Barcelona footballer said that he thinks it is a "very beautiful" city. Zenit returned to Russia from Spain on Monday, while thanking on his Twitter account the good reception the team had in Iberian lands.