FIFA World Cup 2022: All you need to know about the tournament in Qatar

The 32-team competition will see 64 matches played across eight stadiums. There are several firsts in this year's football World Cup.

FIFA World Cup 2022 trophy
The winner of the FIFA World Cup 2022 will receive a prize money of $44 million and this trophy. Photo: FIFA

It is football World Cup time. Qatar is hosting the FIFA World Cup 2022 for the first time and the tournament kicks off tonight with the host nation facing Ecuador in a Group A match.

Ahead of the start of football’s premier competition, The Federal presents to you a complete guide on the FIFA World Cup 2022.

Also read: FIFA World Cup 2022: Schedule, groups, match times in IST, venues, live TV, streaming, and more

FIFA World Cup 2022 dates, matches, times


The tournament commences on November 20 (Sunday) and ends on December 18 (Sunday). A total of 64 matches will be played over 29 days. The final will be played on Qatar National Day (December 18).

Match timings (IST): 12:30 am, 3:30 pm, 6:30 pm, 8:30 pm, and 9:30 pm.

Who won the last World Cup?

In 2018, France lifted the trophy by beating Croatia 4-2 in the final at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, Russia.

When did Qatar win the bid to host the World Cup?

In 2010, Qatar won the right to host the World Cup, beating bids from Australia, Japan, South Korea and the United States.

Several firsts

Qatar is the first Middle East nation to host the FIFA World Cup. This year’s tournament is also the first winter World Cup. Qatar, as the host, got an automatic entry to the World Cup, and it marks its first appearance in the showpiece event and overall 80th country to feature in the World Cup.

With 11,581 square kilometres in area, Qatar is the smallest country ever to host the World Cup. This will also be the most-expensive football World Cup with Qatar spending over $200 billion.

Also read: Live telecast, streaming of FIFA World Cup in India with channel numbers

Visitors to Qatar

Qatar is expected to welcome more than 1.5 million fans for the World Cup.

168 daily flights

A shortage of accommodation in Qatar means a total of 168 shuttle flights will transport fans from neighbouring countries on each day of the World Cup. They include 60 daily flights from Dubai, 48 from Muscat (Oman), 40 from Riyadh and Jeddah (Saudi Arabia) and 20 from Kuwait City, according to a report on France24.

Also read: Golden Boot winners of FIFA World Cup from 1930-2018

8 stadiums

There are eight stadiums which will host the FIFA World Cup 2022. Al Bayt Stadium, Khalifa International Stadium, Al Thumama Stadium, Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium, Lusail Stadium, Stadium 974, Education City Stadium and Al Janoub Stadium are the eight venues.

Stadium made of shipping containers

According to the organisers, Stadium 974 is constructed entirely from shipping containers and modular steel. It is the first fully demountable covered football stadium. The stadium is named after Qatar’s international dialling code (+974) and also due to the use of 974 shipping containers.


The Lusail Stadium will host the final and it is the largest among the eight World Cup venues, in terms of capacity. It can accommodate 80,000 spectators.

Also read: What is connected ball technology at FIFA World Cup 2022?

Teams and groups

There are 32 teams competing in the World Cup. They are divided into eight groups of four each. After the round-robin phase, the top two from each group progress to the Round of 16 knockout stage, then quarter-finals, semi-finals and the big final.

Total players

As many as 831 players are in Qatar for the FIFA World Cup 2022. Each team can pick a maximum of 26 players. In previous editions, teams were allowed to send only 23-man squads. However, things have changed after the COVID-19 pandemic.

Also read: Full list of all 32 squads for FIFA World Cup 2022

Most experienced player

Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo is the most experienced player at this year’s World Cup. He has played in 101 international matches and also has scored the most goals – 117.

Youngest player

Germany’s striker Youssoufa Moukoko, who turns 18 today (November 20), will be the youngest player at the World Cup in Qatar and if he gets to play, he will become the youngest player to play at the tournament in 20 years and the ninth youngest overall, as per FIFA.

Oldest player

Mexico goalkeeper Alfredo Talavera, 40, will be the oldest player in Qatar and could become the eighth oldest player to feature at the tournament, according to FIFA.

Also read: FIFA 2022 World Cup: What is semi-automated offside tech, or SAOT?

Record beckons Lionel Messi

Argentine superstar Lionel Messi could become the most capped World Cup player if his team qualifies for the final and on the way, he plays all seven games. So far, he has played 19 World Cup games and has a chance to surpass record holder Lothar Matthaus, who played 25 World Cup matches.

21 editions

So far, 21 editions of the World Cup have been played. Qatar is hosting the 22nd edition of the tournament.

Prize money

The winning team of the World Cup will receive $44 million besides the trophy.

Also read: FIFA World Cup: Bengal mutton and Namakkal eggs for players, fans


3.2 million tickets have been allocated to the FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar.

55 kilometres

All eight World Cup stadiums in Qatar are located within 55 kilometres.

Also read: Sale of beer banned in World Cup stadiums

Most successful team

Brazil is the most successful team with five World Cup titles.

8 World Cup champions

Brazil (5 times), Germany (4), Italy (4), Argentina (2), France (2), Uruguay (2), England (1) and Spain (1) are the eight countries to have won the World Cup since the inaugural edition in 1930.

Next World Cup

The next edition of the FIFA World Cup will be played in 2026 in Canada, the United States and Mexico with the participation of 48 teams.

Also read: FIFA World Cup live coverage in 5 languages in India

Special awards

Fair Play trophy

The FIFA Fair Play trophy, a fair play medal for each player and team official, a diploma and a voucher for $50,000 worth of football equipment (to be used for youth football development) will be presented to the team finishing first in the fair play contest. The applicable rules are in the fair play contest regulations.

Golden, Silver and Bronze Boots

The Golden Boot will be awarded to the player who scores the most goals in the final competition. If two or more players score the same number of goals, the number of assists (as determined by the members of the FIFA Technical Study Group) shall be decisive. If two or more players are still equal after taking into account the number of assists, the total minutes played in the tournament will be taken into account, with the player playing fewer minutes ranked first. A Silver Boot and a Bronze Boot will also be awarded for the second and third-highest goalscorers respectively.

Golden, Silver and Bronze Balls

The Golden Ball will be awarded to the best player of the final competition. A Silver Ball and a Bronze Ball will be awarded to the second- and third-best players respectively.

Golden Glove

The Golden Glove will be awarded to the best goalkeeper in the final competition, as selected by the FIFA Technical Study Group.

Young Player

The Young Player Award will be presented to the best young player (born on or after 1 January 2001) in the final competition, as selected by the FIFA Technical Study Group.

Previous FIFA World Cup champions

  • 2018: France
  • 2014: Germany
  • 2010: Spain
  • 2006: Italy
  • 2002: Brazil
  • 1998: France
  • 1994: Brazil
  • 1990: West Germany
  • 1986: Argentina
  • 1982: Italy
  • 1978: Argentina
  • 1974: West Germany
  • 1970: Brazil
  • 1966: England
  • 1962: Brazil
  • 1958: Brazil
  • 1954: West Germany
  • 1950: Uruguay
  • 1938: Italy
  • 1934: Italy
  • 1930: Uruguay

Note: No World Cups in 1942 and 1946 due to World War II.