Posted inNews, FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, Sports & Activities

When is FIFA World Cup 2022 starting: Latest updates

FIFA World Cup 2022 takes place in Qatar from November 21 to December 18, 2022.

When is FIFA World Cup 2022 starting: Latest updates

When is FIFA World Cup 2022 starting?

FIFA World Cup 2022 kicks off on Sunday, November 20, at Al Bayt Stadium in Qatar. The 22nd edition of the quadrennial tournament makes history with the first World Cup event to take place in the Middle East and the last to feature 32 teams.

The tournament will be wrapped in less than a month, in a condensed 28-day format, with the final game scheduled on Sunday, December 18, 2022, on Qatar National Day, at Lusail stadium.

A total of 32 teams, including hosts Qatar, have qualified for the FIFA World Cup 2022. These 32 teams will compete in eight groups. Each group will feature four teams.

FIFA World Cup 2022 Groups

The 2022 World Cup will begin with 32 teams in eight groups of four.

When is FIFA World Cup 2022 starting - FIFA World Cup 2022 Groups

World Cup 2022 kick off time?

The World Cup 2022 kicks off on Sunday November 20 at the Al Bayt Stadium when the hosts take on Ecuador in Group A.

The tournament was originally set to begin a day later with Senegal’s game against the Netherlands at Al Thumama Stadium but Qatar’s match was moved forward in August to allow them to open their home tournament.

England will feature Group B match against Iran on Monday, November 21st at local time 4:00PM (local time) at Khalifa International Stadium, Al Rayyan.

It will be followed by Senegal against Netherlands, at local time 7:00PM at Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor, while Wales face USA at local time 10:00PM.

FIFA has confirmed the first two rounds of matches will kick off at 1pm, 4pm, 7pm and 10pm local time, with four matches being played daily during the group stage. Kick-off times in the final round of group games and knockout-round matches will be at 6pm and 10pm local time. The final is scheduled to kick off at 6pm local time. Given below is a breakdown of how the local kickoff times in Qatar translate across regions around the world:

USA & Canada
Group stage only1 p.m.5 a.m.10 a.m.9 p.m.3:30 p.m.
Group stage only4 p.m.8 a.m.1 p.m.12 a.m.6:30 p.m.
Knockouts only6 p.m.10 a.m.3 p.m.2 a.m.8:30 p.m.
Group stage only7 p.m.11 a.m.4 p.m.3 a.m.9:30 p.m.
Group/Knockouts10 p.m.2 p.m.7 p.m.6 a.m.12:30 a.m.

You might also like: How to get Hayya Card for FIFA World Cup 2022

World Cup 2022 tournament format

The FIFA World Cup 2022 will follow recent editions with a 32-team group stage that whittles down the field down to 16 teams. Four matches will be played every day during the group stage, which will run over a 12-day period from November 21st until December 2nd. The top two teams from each of the eight groups will only advance to the knockout round of 16.

Those 16 group-stage teams move on to the single-game knockout stages — Round of 16, quarterfinals, semifinals, final — where the winner advances and the loser goes home. 

The last-16 fixtures are due to take place between Dec 3rd – Dec 6th, with the quarter-finals being held on Dec 9th and Dec 10th.

On December 13 and 14, semi-final showdowns with plenty at stake will be held, followed by a global finale on December 18th – the day after bronze medals are awarded in a third place play-off.

FIFA World Cup 2022 Stadiums

When is FIFA World Cup 2022 starting - Lusail Stadium
Lusail Stadium where the grand final of FIFA World Cup 2022 is hosted

The Venue of FIFA World Cup 2022 is divided into five host cities and eight specially-buiilt stadiums:

  • Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor
  • Khalifa International Stadium, Al Rayyan
  • Al Thumama Stadium, Doha
  • Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium, Al Rayyan
  • Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail
  • Stadium 974, Ras Abu Aboud Stadium, Doha
  • Education City Stadium, Al Rayyan
  • Al Janoub Stadium, Al Wakrah

You might also like: FIFA World Cup 2022 Stadiums in Qatar

FIFA World Cup 2022 tickets

Please click here to see the full tickets details on

Please note: Along with the ticket, every person attending any of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 matches must carry a Hayya (Fan ID) card to access the stadium on match day. Only one Hayya card (Fan ID) is required per person for the duration of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.

Hayya card is in fact required by every person travelling to the State of Qatar during the tournament, whether they intend to attend a match or not.

Why is the FIFA World Cup 2022 in November?

The tournament will take place across November and December, rather than its June/July slot, due to the soaring summer temperatures in Qatar where the temperatures can reach up to 50 degrees celsius. This will be the first winter world cup in the Northern Hemisphere. 

Interestingly, the 2022 World Cup will start on November 21, 2021 and end with the final scheduled for December 18, 2021.