2022 FIFA World Cup

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2022 FIFA World Cup
كأس العالم لكرة القدم 2022
Kaʾs al-ʿālam li-kurat al-qadam 2022
2022 FIFA World Cup.svg
Tournament details
Host countryQatar
Dates20 November18 December
Teams32 (from 5 confederations)
Venue(s)8 (in 5 host cities)
Tournament statistics
Matches played44
Goals scored109 (2.48 per match)
Attendance2,242,155 (50,958 per match)
Top scorer(s) Flag of Ecuador.svg Enner Valencia
Flag of England.svg Marcus Rashford
Flag of France.svg Kylian Mbappé
Flag of the Netherlands.svg Cody Gakpo
Flag of Spain.svg Álvaro Morata
(3 goals each)
All statistics correct as of 1 December 2022.

The 2022 FIFA World Cup is an international football tournament contested by the men's national teams of FIFA's member associations. The 22nd FIFA World Cup, it is taking place in Qatar from 20 November to 18 December 2022. It is the first World Cup to be held in the Arab world and Muslim world, and the second held entirely in Asia after the 2002 tournament in South Korea and Japan. [upper-alpha 1] France are the defending champions, having defeated Croatia 4–2 in the 2018 final. At an estimated cost of over $220 billion, [1] it is the most expensive World Cup ever held; this figure is disputed by Qatari officials, including organizing CEO Nasser Al Khater, who said the true cost is $8 billion, [2] and other figures relate to overall infrastructure development since the World Cup was awarded to Qatar in 2010.


This tournament is set to be the last with 32 participating teams, with the field to increase to 48 teams for the 2026 edition. To avoid the extremes of Qatar's hot climate, [upper-alpha 2] this World Cup is being held during November and December. [upper-alpha 3] It is being played in a reduced timeframe of 29 days with 64 matches to be played in eight venues across five cities. The Qatar national football team entered the event automatically, their first World Cup, alongside 31 teams who were determined by the qualification process. Qatar lost all three group matches; they became the first hosts to lose their opening game, the earliest host nation eliminated, [5] and the second host (after South Africa in 2010) not to progress past the first stage. [6]

In the first round of the tournament finals, the teams competed in eight round-robin groups of four teams for points, with the top two teams in each group proceeding. These 16 teams will advance to the knockout stage, where three rounds of play to decide which teams would participate in the final, which will be held on 18 December 2022 at Lusail Stadium, coinciding with Qatar's National Day. [7]

The choice to host the World Cup in Qatar has been a source of controversy. [upper-alpha 4] Criticisms focused on Qatar's human-rights record and climate, and allegations of bribery and FIFA corruption. [upper-alpha 5]


The FIFA World Cup is a professional association football tournament held between national football teams. [19] Organised by FIFA, the tournament, held every four years, was first played in 1930 in Uruguay, [20] and has been contested by 32 teams since the 1998 event. [20] The tournament is contested with eight round-robin groups followed by a knockout round for 16 teams. [21] The defending champions are the French national football team, who defeated the Croatia national football team 4–2 in the 2018 FIFA World Cup final. [22] [23] The event is scheduled to take place under a reduced length, [24] from 20 November to 18 December in Qatar. [25] [26] [27] Being held in Qatar, it is the first World Cup tournament to be held in the Arab world. [28] Spectators were not required to follow most COVID-19 pandemic restrictions such as social distancing, wearing masks, and negative tests. [29]


Unlike previous FIFA World Cups, which are typically played in June and July, because of Qatar's intense summer heat and often fairly high humidity, [3] [26] [30] the 2022 World Cup is being played in November and December. [8] [31] As a result, the World Cup is unusually staged in the middle of the seasons of domestic football leagues, which start in late July or August, including all of the major European leagues, which have been obliged to incorporate extended breaks into their domestic schedules to accommodate the World Cup. Major European competitions have scheduled their respective competitions group matches to be played before the World Cup, to avoid playing group matches the following year. [32]

The match schedule was confirmed by FIFA in July 2020. [33] The group stage was set to begin on 21 November, with four matches every day. Later, the schedule was tweaked by moving the Qatar vs Ecuador game to 20 November, after Qatar successfully lobbied FIFA to allow their team to open the tournament. [34] [35] The final will be played on 18 December 2022, National Day, at Lusail Iconic Stadium. [36] [33]

The matches for each group were allocated to the following stadiums: [36]

FIFA confirmed the group stage venue and kick-off times on 1 April 2022, following the draw. [37] [38] On 11 August, it was confirmed that Qatar vs Ecuador had been brought forward one day, now becoming the tournament's opening match, while Senegal vs Netherlands, which would have opened the tournament under the original schedule, had been reallocated to the freed-up timeslot. [39]

Prize money

In April 2022, FIFA announced the prizes for all participating nations. Each qualified team will receive $1.5 million before the competition to cover preparation costs with each team receiving at least $9 million in prize money. This edition's total prize pool will be $440 million, $40 million greater than the prize pool of the previous tournament. [40]

PlaceAmount (in millions)
Per teamTotal
Third place$27$27
Fourth place$25$25
5th–8th place (quarter-finals)$17$68
9th–16th place (Round of 16)$13$104
17th–32nd place (Group stage)$9$144

Rule changes

The tournament will feature new substitution rules whereby teams may make up to five substitutions in normal time, and an additional substitution in extra time. [41] [42] [43] In addition, it will be the first World Cup to feature concussion substitutions, whereby each team is permitted to use a maximum of one concussion substitute during a match. A concussion substitution does not count towards a team's quota of regular substitutions. [44] Iranian goalkeeper Alireza Beiranvand suffered a concussion in his country's opening match against England and was replaced by Hossein Hosseini. This was the first use of a dedicated concussion substitute during a World Cup. [45]

Host selection

The bidding procedure to host the 2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cups began in January 2009. National associations had until 2 February 2009 to register interest. [46] Initially, 11 bids were made for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, but Mexico withdrew from proceedings, [47] [48] and Indonesia's bid was rejected by FIFA in February 2010 after the Indonesian Football Association failed to submit a letter of Indonesian government guarantee to support the bid. [49] Indonesian officials had not ruled out a bid for the 2026 FIFA World Cup, until Qatar was awarded the 2022 tournament.[ citation needed ]

After UEFA were guaranteed to host the 2018 event, members of UEFA were no longer in contention to host in 2022.[ citation needed ] There were five bids remaining for the 2022 FIFA World Cup: Australia, Japan, Qatar, South Korea, and the United States. The 22-member FIFA Executive Committee convened in Zürich on 2 December 2010 to vote to select the hosts of both tournaments. [50] Two FIFA executive committee members were suspended before the vote in relation to allegations of corruption regarding their votes. [51] The decision to host the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, which was graded as having "high operational risk", [52] generated criticism from media commentators. [53] It has been criticised by many as being part of the FIFA corruption scandals. [54]

The voting patterns were as follows: [55]

2022 FIFA bidding (majority 12 votes)
Round 1Round 2Round 3Round 4
United States3568
South Korea455Eliminated

Host selection criticism

Russian President Vladimir Putin handing over the symbolic relay baton for the hosting rights of the 2022 FIFA World Cup to Qatar's Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani in June 2018 Rusia entrego el relevo de la antorcha de la Copa del Mundo a Qatar.jpg
Russian President Vladimir Putin handing over the symbolic relay baton for the hosting rights of the 2022 FIFA World Cup to Qatar's Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani in June 2018

There have been allegations of bribery and corruption in the selection process involving FIFA's executive committee members. [56] These allegations are being investigated by FIFA (see § Bidding corruption allegations, 2014, below). In May 2011, allegations of corruption within the FIFA senior officials raised questions over the legitimacy of the World Cup 2022 being held in Qatar. The accusations of corruption have been made relating to how Qatar won the right to host the event. A FIFA internal investigation and report cleared Qatar of any violation, but chief investigator Michael J. Garcia has since described FIFA's report on his enquiry as containing "numerous materially incomplete and erroneous representations." [57]

In May 2015, Swiss federal prosecutors opened an investigation into corruption and money laundering related to the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bids. [58] [59] In August 2018, former FIFA president Sepp Blatter claimed that Qatar had used "black ops", suggesting that the bid committee had cheated to win the hosting rights. [60] Some investigations found that Qatar sought an edge in securing hosting by hiring a former CIA officer turned private contractor, Kevin Chalker, to spy on rival bid teams and key football officials who picked the winner in 2010. [61]

In September 2018, a delegation from al-Ghufran tribe lodged a complaint to FIFA's president to reject the establishment of the World Cup in Qatar unless its government restored the Qatari nationality to all those affected from the tribe and returned land allegedly stolen from them to build the sport facilities. [62]

Qatar has faced strong criticism for the treatment of foreign workers involved in preparation for the World Cup, with Amnesty International referring to "forced labour" and poor working conditions, [63] [64] while many migrant workers reported having to pay large "recruitment fees" to obtain employment. [65] The Guardian newspaper reported that many workers are denied food and water, have their identity papers taken away from them, and that they are not paid on time or at all, making some of them in effect slaves. The Guardian has estimated that up to 4,000 workers may die from lax safety and other causes by the time the competition is held. Between 2015 and 2021, the Qatari government adopted new labour reforms to improve working conditions, including a minimum wage for all workers and the removal of the kafala system. According to Amnesty International, however, living and working conditions of the foreign workers have not improved in the last years. [66]

Qatar is the smallest nation by area ever to have been awarded a FIFA World Cup – the next smallest by area is Switzerland, host of the 1954 World Cup, which is more than three times as large as Qatar and only needed to host 16 teams instead of 32. Qatar also became only the second country (not including Uruguay and Italy, hosts of the first two World Cups) to be awarded a FIFA World Cup despite having never qualified for a previous edition: Japan was awarded co-hosting rights of the 2002 World Cup in 1996 without ever having qualified for the finals, although they qualified for the 1998 edition. Of the eight stadiums used in the tournament, six are located in the Doha metropolitan area, making it the first World Cup since 1930 in which most of the stadiums were in one city. While this decreased the distance that fans and players needed to commute, Qatar itself is struggling to accommodate the numbers of arriving fans with its diminutive amount of space. [67]

Due to Qatar's laws on alcohol consumption, World Cup organisers have announced the creation of designated "sobering up" zones as an alternative to wide-scale arrests of intoxicated fans during the World Cup. [68] Qatar's World Cup chief executive of the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy, Nasser Al Khater, stated that the purpose of the designated sobering-up areas was to ensure the fans' safety. [69] If a fan is sent to the "sobering up" zone, they will be permitted to leave when they can display clearheaded behavior. [70] Multiple news agencies described the controversy as a "cultural clash" between social conservatism and Islamic morality against the "norms" of secular Western liberal democracies. [14] [71]



FIFA's six continental confederations organised their own qualifying competitions. All 211 FIFA member associations were eligible to enter qualification. The Qatari national team, as hosts, qualified automatically for the tournament. However, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) obliged Qatar to participate in the Asian qualifying stage as the first two rounds also act as qualification for the 2023 AFC Asian Cup. [72] Since Qatar reached the final stage as winners in their group, Lebanon, the fifth-best second place team, advanced instead. [73] France, the reigning World Cup champions also went through qualifying stages as normal. [74]

Saint Lucia initially entered CONCACAF qualification but withdrew from it before their first match. North Korea withdrew from the AFC qualifying round due to safety concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Both American Samoa and Samoa withdrew before the OFC qualification draw. [75] Tonga withdrew after the 2022 Hunga Tonga–Hunga Ha'apai eruption and tsunami. [76] Due to COVID-19 outbreaks in their squads, Vanuatu and Cook Islands also withdrew because of the travel restrictions. [77] [78]

Of the 32 nations qualified to play at the 2022 FIFA World Cup, 24 countries competed at the previous tournament in 2018. [79] Qatar are the only team making their debut in the FIFA World Cup, becoming the first hosts to make their tournament debut since Italy in 1934. As a result, the 2022 tournament is the first World Cup in which none of the teams that earned a spot through qualification were making their debut. The Netherlands, Ecuador, Ghana, Cameroon and the United States returned to the tournament after missing the 2018 tournament. Canada returned after 36 years, their only prior appearance being in 1986. [80] Wales made their first appearance in 64 years – a record gap for a European team, their only previous participation having been in 1958. [81]

Italy, the four-time winners and reigning European champions, failed to qualify for a second successive World Cup for the first time in their history, losing in the qualification play-off semi-finals. [82] The Italians were the only former champions that failed to qualify, and the highest ranked team in the FIFA World Rankings to do so. Italy are also the fourth team to have failed to qualify for the upcoming World Cup having won the previous UEFA European Championship, after Czechoslovakia in 1978, Denmark in 1994 and Greece in 2006. [83] The previous World Cup hosts, Russia, were disqualified from competing due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. [84]

Chile, the 2015 and 2016 Copa América winners, failed to qualify for the second consecutive time. Nigeria were defeated by Ghana on away goals in Confederation of African Football (CAF) final playoff round, having qualified for the previous three World Cups and six out of the last seven. Egypt, Panama, Colombia, Peru, Iceland and Sweden, all of whom qualified for the 2018 World Cup, did not qualify for the 2022 tournament. [85] Ghana were the lowest ranked team to qualify, ranked 61st. [86]

The qualified teams, listed by region, with numbers in parentheses indicating final positions in the FIFA Men's World Ranking before the tournament are: [87]


The final draw was held at the Doha Exhibition and Convention Center in Doha, Qatar, [88] on 1 April 2022, [89] 19:00 AST, prior to the completion of qualification. The two winners of the inter-confederation play-offs and the winner of the Path A of the UEFA play-offs were not known at the time of the draw. [90] The draw was attended by 2,000 guests and was led by Carli Lloyd, Jermaine Jenas and Samantha Johnson, assisted by the likes of Cafu (Brazil), Lothar Matthäus (Germany), Adel Ahmed Malalla (Qatar), Ali Daei (Iran), Bora Milutinović (Serbia/Mexico), Jay-Jay Okocha (Nigeria), Rabah Madjer (Algeria) and Tim Cahill (Australia). [91] [92]

For the draw, the 32 teams were allocated into four pots based on the FIFA Men's World Rankings of 31 March 2022. [93] Pot one contained the hosts Qatar (who were automatically assigned to position A1) and the best seven teams. Pot two contained the next best eight teams, with the next best eight teams into pot 3. Pot 4 contained the five lowest-ranked teams, along with the placeholders for the two inter-confederation play-off winners and the UEFA Path A play-off winner. Teams from the same confederation could not be drawn into the same group except for UEFA teams, for which there was at least one and no more than two per group. [94]

This principle also applied to the placeholder teams, with constraints applying based on the confederation of both potential winners of each play-off tie. The draw started with pot 1 and ended with pot 4, with each team selected then allocated into the first available group alphabetically. The position for the team within the group would then be drawn (for the purpose of the match schedule), with the pot 1 teams automatically drawn into position 1 of each group. [94] The pots for the draw are shown below. [95]

Pot 1Pot 2Pot 3Pot 4

Flag of Qatar.svg  Qatar (51) (hosts)
Flag of Brazil.svg  Brazil (1)
Flag of Belgium (civil).svg  Belgium (2)
Flag of France.svg  France (3)
Flag of Argentina.svg  Argentina (4)
Flag of England.svg  England (5)
Flag of Spain.svg  Spain (7)
Flag of Portugal.svg  Portugal (8)

Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico (9)
Flag of the Netherlands.svg  Netherlands (10)
Flag of Denmark.svg  Denmark (11)
Flag of Germany.svg  Germany (12)
Flag of Uruguay.svg  Uruguay (13)
Flag of Switzerland (Pantone).svg  Switzerland (14)
Flag of the United States.svg  United States (15)
Flag of Croatia.svg  Croatia (16)

Flag of Senegal.svg  Senegal (20)
Flag of Iran.svg  Iran (21)
Flag of Japan.svg  Japan (23)
Flag of Morocco.svg  Morocco (24)
Flag of Serbia.svg  Serbia (25)
Flag of Poland.svg  Poland (26)
Flag of South Korea.svg  South Korea (29)
Flag of Tunisia.svg  Tunisia (35)

Flag of Cameroon.svg  Cameroon (37)
Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg  Canada (38)
Flag of Ecuador.svg  Ecuador (46)
Flag of Saudi Arabia.svg  Saudi Arabia (49)
Flag of Ghana.svg  Ghana (61)
Flag of Wales (1959-present).svg  Wales (18) [upper-alpha 6]
Flag of Costa Rica.svg  Costa Rica (31) [upper-alpha 7]
Flag of Australia (converted).svg  Australia (42) [upper-alpha 8]


Before submitting their final squad for the tournament, teams name a provisional squad of up to 55 players. Teams were required to have their 55-player roster submitted to FIFA by 21 October. [96] Teams were required to name their final squads by 13 November. [97] In August 2022, FIFA increased the final squad size to 26 players from a total of 23 players at the 2018 edition. [98] All teams have a total of 26 players in their final squads except for Iran and France, who decided not to replace Karim Benzema after he sustained an injury.


In May 2022, FIFA announced the list of 36 referees, 69 assistant referees and 24 video assistant referees for the tournament. Of the 36 referees, FIFA included two each from Argentina, Brazil, England and France. [99] [100] For the first time women referees will referee games at a major men's tournament. [101]

Stéphanie Frappart from France, Salima Mukansanga from Rwanda and Yoshimi Yamashita from Japan became the first female referees to be appointed to a men's World Cup. [102] They will be joined by three female assistant referees, Neuza Back, Kathryn Nesbitt and Karen Díaz Medina, also for the first time. Frappart oversaw the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup final. [103] Gambian referee Bakary Gassama and Argentine assistant referee Juan Pablo Belatti are among the officials to serve at their third World Cup. Belatti was an assistant referee in the 2018 final. [104] [105] [106] Other returning officials include referees César Ramos of Mexico and Janny Sikazwe of Zambia, and Iranian assistant referee Mohammadreza Mansouri. [107] [108] [109]

Stéphanie Frappart became the first female referee to officiate a men's World Cup match when she took charge of the Group E match between Germany and Costa Rica on 1 December 2022.


The first five proposed venues for the World Cup were unveiled at the beginning of March 2010. Qatar intended that the stadiums should reflect its history and culture, and for the designs to meet the following terms of reference: legacy, comfort, accessibility, and sustainability. [110] The stadiums are equipped with cooling systems that aim to reduce temperatures within the stadium by up to 20 °C (36 °F). [111] [112]

Their marketing includes statements describing the stadiums as zero waste, and the upper tiers of the stadiums will be disassembled after the World Cup and donated to countries with less developed sports infrastructure. [111] [112] Qatar aspires to be compliant and certified by the Global Sustainability Assessment System (GSAS) for all the World Cup stadiums. All of the five stadium projects launched have been designed by German architect Albert Speer & Partners. [113] The Al Bayt and Al Wakrah stadiums will be the only indoor stadiums of the eight used. [114]

In an April 2013 report by Merrill Lynch, the organisers in Qatar requested that FIFA approve a smaller number of stadiums due to the growing costs. [115] Bloomberg said that Qatar wished to cut the number of venues to eight or nine from the twelve originally planned. [116] By April 2017, FIFA had yet to finalise the number of stadiums Qatar must have readied in five years' time. Qatar's Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy (SC) said it expected there would be eight in and near Doha, with the exception of Al Khor. [117] [118]

The most used stadium will be the Lusail Iconic Stadium, which will host 10 matches, including the final. The Al Bayt Stadium in Al Khor will host 9 matches. All but the nine matches hosted in Al Khor in this tournament will be held within a 20 miles (32 km) radius of the centre of Doha. In addition, the Khalifa, Al Thumama and Education City stadiums will host 8 matches each (Khalifa will host the 3rd place match, while Al Thumama and Education City will host a quarterfinal each) and the 974, Al Janoub and Ahmad bin Ali stadiums will host 7 matches each, including a Round of 16 match each.

Stadium 974, formerly known as Ras Abu Aboud, is the seventh FIFA World Cup 2022 venue to be completed by the SC. Its name comes from the number of shipping containers used in its construction and Qatar's international dialling code. The venue will be dismantled completely after the tournament - this stadium is the first temporary stadium ever used for a FIFA World Cup. [119] All of the other stadiums used except Khalifa International will be reduced in capacity by half. [120]

Lusail Al Khor Doha
Lusail Iconic Stadium Al Bayt Stadium Al Thumama Stadium Stadium 974
Capacity: 88,966 [121] [122] Capacity: 68,895 [123] [124] Capacity: 44,400 [125] [126] Capacity: 44,089 [127] [128]
17 11 2021 - Visita ao Estadio Lusail (51688281025).jpg Al Bayt Stadium.jpg HK Zhong Huan Central Zu Bi Li Jie Jubilee Street Zhong Huan Jie Shi Central Market mall sign Zu Qiu Shi Jie Bei FIFA World Football Cup Mo Xing Zhan Lan exhibition Zu Qiu Chang Guan stadiums November 2022 Px3 10.jpg HK Zhong Huan Central Zu Bi Li Jie Jubilee Street Zhong Huan Jie Shi Central Market mall sign Zu Qiu Shi Jie Bei FIFA World Football Cup Mo Xing Zhan Lan exhibition Zu Qiu Chang Guan stadiums November 2022 Px3 06.jpg
Host cities in QatarStadiums in Doha area
Al Rayyan Al Wakrah
Khalifa International Stadium Ahmad bin Ali Stadium [upper-alpha 9]
(Al Rayyan Stadium)
Education City Stadium Al Janoub Stadium
Capacity: 45,857 [129] [130] Capacity: 45,032 [131] [132]
Capacity: 44,667 [133] [134] Capacity: 44,325 [135] [136]
Khalifa Stadium, Doha, Brazil vs Argentina (2010).jpg World Cup Opening Ceremony in Doha, Qatar (52515886760).jpg 2022 FIFA World Cup Korea Uruguay 01.jpg 2020 AFC Champions League Final 2.jpg

Team base camps

Base camps will be used by the 32 national squads to stay and train before and during the World Cup tournament. In July 2022, FIFA announced the hotels and training sites for each participating team. [137] [138] This World Cup is the most compact since the inaugural edition in 1930, with 24 of the 32 teams being within a 10 km radius of each other, and are concentrated within the Doha area. It is the first Cup since 1930 in which players did not need to take flights to matches and could remain at the same training base throughout the entire tournament. [139] [140]

TeamHotelTraining site
Flag of Argentina.svg  Argentina Qatar University Hostel 1 Qatar University Training Site 3
Flag of Australia (converted).svg  Australia New Aspire Academy Athlete Accommodation Aspire Zone Training Facilities 5
Flag of Belgium (civil).svg  Belgium Hilton Salwa Beach Resort and VillasSalwa Training Site
Flag of Brazil.svg  Brazil The Westin Doha Hotel and Spa Al Arabi SC Stadium
Flag of Cameroon.svg  Cameroon Banyan Tree Doha At La Cigale Mushaireb Al Sailiya SC Stadium
Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg  Canada Century Marina Hotel Lusail Umm Salal SC Training Facilities
Flag of Costa Rica.svg  Costa Rica dusitD2 Salwa Doha Al Ahli SC Stadium
Flag of Croatia.svg  Croatia Hilton DohaAl Ersal Training Site 3
Flag of Denmark.svg  Denmark Retaj Salwa Resort & SPA Al Sailiya SC 2
Flag of Ecuador.svg  Ecuador Hyatt Regency Oryx Doha Mesaimeer SC Training Facilities
Flag of England.svg  England Souq Al Wakra Hotel Qatar by Tivoli Al Wakrah SC Stadium
Flag of France.svg  France Al Messila – A Luxury Collection Resort & Spa, Doha Al Sadd SC Stadium
Flag of Germany.svg  Germany Zulal Wellness Resort Al Shamal SC Stadium
Flag of Ghana.svg  Ghana DoubleTree by Hilton Doha – Al Sadd Aspire Zone Training Facilities 1
Flag of Iran.svg  Iran Al Rayyan Hotel Doha Curio Collection by Hilton Al Rayyan SC Training Facilities 1
Flag of Japan.svg  Japan Radisson Blu Hotel Doha Al Sadd SC New Training Facilities 1
Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico Simaisma, A Murwab Resort Al Khor SC Stadium
Flag of Morocco.svg  Morocco Wyndham Doha West Bay Al Duhail SC Stadium
Flag of the Netherlands.svg  Netherlands The St. Regis Doha Qatar University Training Site 6
Flag of Poland.svg  Poland Ezdan Palace Hotel Al Kharaitiyat SC Training Facilities
Flag of Portugal.svg  Portugal Al Samriya Autograph Collection Hotel Al Shahaniya SC Training Facilities
Flag of Qatar.svg  Qatar Al Aziziyah Boutique Hotel Aspire Zone Training Facilities 3
Flag of Saudi Arabia.svg  Saudi Arabia Sealine Beach, a Murwab ResortSealine Training Site
Flag of Senegal.svg  Senegal Duhail Handball Sports Hall Al Duhail SC 2
Flag of Serbia.svg  Serbia Rixos Gulf Hotel Doha Al Arabi SC Training Facilities
Flag of South Korea.svg  South Korea Le Méridien City Center Doha Al Egla Training Site 5
Flag of Spain.svg  Spain Qatar University Hostel 2 Qatar University Training Site 1
Flag of Switzerland (Pantone).svg  Switzerland Le Royal Méridien, DohaUniversity of Doha for Science and Technology Training Facilities
Flag of Tunisia.svg  Tunisia Wyndham Grand Doha West Bay Beach Al Egla Training Sites 3
Flag of the United States.svg  United States Marsa Malaz Kempinski, The Pearl – Doha Al Gharafa SC Stadium
Flag of Uruguay.svg  Uruguay Pullman Doha West BayAl Ersal Training Site 1
Flag of Wales (1959-present).svg  Wales Delta Hotels City Center Doha Al Sadd SC New Training Facilities 2

Tournament summary

Opening ceremony

The opening ceremony took place on Sunday, 20 November 2022 at the Al Bayt Stadium in Al Khor, prior to the opening match of the tournament between hosts Qatar and Ecuador. [141] It included appearances by Morgan Freeman and Ghanim Al-Muftah, along with performances by South Korean singer and BTS member Jungkook and Qatari singer Fahad Al Kubaisi. [142] [143] It was the first time that the Qur'an had been recited as part of the opening ceremony. [144]

Group stage matches

The first match of the tournament was held between Qatar and Ecuador in Group A. Ecuador had a disallowed goal in the opening minutes, [145] but eventually won 2–0 with two goals from Enner Valencia. [146] In losing the game, Qatar became the first host nation to lose their opening match at a World Cup. [147] [148] [149] Many Qatar natives were seen leaving the game before the end, with ESPN reporting that two-thirds of the attendance had left. [150] [151] The other starting match in group A was won by the Netherlands 2–0 over Senegal. Cody Gakpo scored the opening goal in the 84th minute and Davy Klaassen added a second in stoppage time. [152] Senegal faced Qatar in the third match of the group; Boulaye Dia capitalised on a slip by Boualem Khoukhi to put Senegal 1–0 ahead. Famara Diedhiou scored a second with a header, before Mohammed Muntari scored Qatar's first-ever goal at a World Cup to reduce the deficit back to one. Senegal eventually won the match 3–1 after an 84th-minute goal by Bamba Dieng. With this result, Qatar became the first team be eliminated from the tournament, as well as becoming the first host nation to ever be knocked out of the tournament after two games. [153] Gakpo scored his second goal of the tournament as the Netherlands led Ecuador; however, Valencia scored an equaliser in the 49th minute. [154] The Netherlands won 2–0 against Qatar following goals by Gakpo and Frenkie de Jong to win the group, while Qatar were the first home nation to lose all three group matches. [155] Senegal faced Ecuador to determine the second knockout round qualifier. At the end of the first half, Ismaila Sarr scored a penalty kick to put Senegal ahead. In the 67th minute, Moisés Caicedo scored an equaliser, but shortly after Kalidou Koulibaly gave Senegal the victory. The win was enough to qualify Senegal as the runners-up of Group A. [156]

In Group B, England completed a 6–2 victory over Iran. Iranian keeper Alireza Beiranvand was removed from the game for a suspected concussion before England scored three first-half goals. [157] Mehdi Taremi scored in the second half after which England defender Harry Maguire was also removed for a concussion. [157] Timothy Weah, of the United States, scored a first-half goal against Wales; however, the match finished as a draw after a penalty kick was won and scored by Gareth Bale. [158] Iran defeated Wales 2–0 following a red card to Welsh goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey after he committed a foul outside of his penalty area. Substitute Rouzbeh Cheshmi scored the first goal eight minutes into stoppage time, followed by Ramin Rezaeian scoring three minutes later. [159] England and the United States played to a 0–0 draw, with only four shots on target between them. [160] England won the group following a 3–0 win over Wales with a goal by Phil Foden and two by Marcus Rashford. [161] The United States defeated Iran 1–0 as Christian Pulisic scored the winning goal to qualify for the round of 16. [162]

In Group C, Argentina took an early lead against Saudi Arabia after Lionel Messi scored a penalty kick after ten minutes; however, second-half goals by Saleh Al-Shehri and Salem Al-Dawsari won the match 2–1 for Saudi Arabia, [163] a result described as a "shock." [164] The match between Mexico and Poland ended as a goalless 0–0 draw after Guillermo Ochoa saved Robert Lewandowski's penalty kick attempt. [165] Lewandowski scored his first career World Cup goal in a 2–0 win over Saudi Arabia four days later. [166] [167] Argentina defeated Mexico 2–0, with team captain Messi scoring the opener and teammate Enzo Fernández scoring his first international goal. [168] [169]

The match between Denmark and Tunisia in Group D ended as a goalless draw; both teams had goals disallowed by offside calls. [170] Danish midfielder Christian Eriksen made his first major international appearance since suffering a cardiac arrest at the UEFA Euro 2020. [170] Defending champions France went a goal behind to Australia, after a Craig Goodwin goal within ten minutes. France, however, scored four goals, by Adrien Rabiot, by Kylian Mbappé, and two by Olivier Giroud to win 4–1. [171] The goals tied Giroud with Thierry Henry as France's all-time top goalscorer. [171] Mitchell Duke scored the only goal as Australia won against Tunisia. This was their first World Cup win since 2010. [172] [173] Mbappé scored a brace as France defeated Denmark 2–1. This was enough for France to qualify for the knockout round – the first time since Brazil in 2006 that the defending champions progressed through the opening round. [174] [172] Mathew Leckie scored the only goal as Australia defeated Denmark 1-0, qualifying for the knockout round as runners-up with the win. [175] Wahbi Khazri scored for Tunisia against France in the 58th minute. Although Antoine Griezmann equalised in stoppage time it was overturned for offside. Tunisia finished third in the group, as they required a draw in the Denmark and Australia game. [176]

Group E began with Japan facing 2014 champions Germany. After an early penalty kick was converted by Germany's İlkay Gündoğan, Japan scored two second-half goals by Ritsu Dōan and Takuma Asano in a 2–1 upset win. [177] In the second group match, Spain defeated Costa Rica 7–0. First-half goals by Dani Olmo, Marco Asensio, and Ferran Torres were followed by goals by Gavi, Carlos Soler, Alvaro Morata and a second by Torres. [178] [179] This was the largest defeat in a World Cup since Portugal's victory over North Korea in the 2010 event by the same scoreline. [180] Costa Rica defeated Japan 1–0, with Keysher Fuller scoring with Costa Rica's first shot on target of the tournament. [181] Germany and Spain drew 1–1, with Álvaro Morata scoring for Spain and Niclas Füllkrug scoring for Germany. [182] [183] [184]

Group F's first match was a goalless draw between Morocco and Croatia. [185] Canada had a penalty kick in the first half of their match against Belgium which was saved by Thibaut Courtois. Belgium won the match by a single goal by Michy Batshuayi. [186] Belgium manager Roberto Martinez confirmed after the game that he believed Canada to have been the better team. [187] Belgium lost 2–0 to Morocco, despite Morocco having a long-range direct free kick goal by Hakim Ziyech overturned for an offside on another player in the lead up to the goal. Two second-half goals from Zakaria Aboukhlal and Romain Saïss helped the Morocco win their first World Cup match since 1998. [188] [189] The match sparked riots in Belgium, with residents fires and fireworks being set off. [190] Alphonso Davies scored Canada's first World Cup goal to give Canada the lead over Croatia. Goals by Marko Livaja, Lovro Majer and two by Andrej Kramaric for Croatia completed a 4–1 victory. [191]

Breel Embolo scored the only goal in the opening match of Group G as Switzerland defeated Cameroon 1–0. [192] Richarlison scored two goals as Brazil won against Serbia, with star player Neymar receiving an ankle injury. [193] Cameroon's Jean-Charles Castelletto scored the opening goal against Serbia, but they were quickly behind as Serbia scored three goals by Strahinja Pavlović, Sergej Milinković-Savić and Aleksandar Mitrović either side of half time. Cameroon, however, scored goals through Vincent Aboubakar and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting completed a 3–3 draw. [194] An 83rd minute winner by Casemiro for Brazil over Switzerland was enough for them to qualify for the knockout stage. [195]

In Group H, Uruguay and South Korea played to a goalless draw. [196] A goalless first half between Portugal and Ghana preceded a penalty converted by Cristiano Ronaldo to give Portugal the lead. In scoring the goal, Ronaldo became the first man to score in five World Cups. Ghana responded with a goal by André Ayew before goals by João Félix, and Rafael Leão by Portugal put them 3–1 ahead. Osman Bukari scored in the 89th minute to trail by a single goal, while Iñaki Williams had a chance to equalise for Ghana ten minutes into stoppage time, but slipped before shooting. The match finished 3–2 to Portugal. [197] Ghanaian Mohammed Salisu opened the scoring against South Korea, with Mohammed Kudus following it up. In the second half, Cho Gue-sung scored a brace for South Korea, leveling the score. Mohammed Kudus scored again in the 68th minute, winning the match 3–2 for Ghana. [198] Portugal defeated Uruguay 2–0 with two goals from Bruno Fernandes, advancing them to the knockout stage. [199] A controversial penalty decision was called late in the game, with a suspected handball from José María Giménez. [200] [201]

Group stage

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Third place
Fourth place
Round of 16
Group stage
Did not qualify or did not (fully) participate 2022 world cup.png
  Third place
  Fourth place
  Round of 16
  Group stage
  Did not qualify or did not (fully) participate

Competing countries were divided into eight groups of four teams (groups A to H). Teams in each group are playing one another in a round-robin, with the top two teams advancing to the knockout stage.

Tie-breaking criteria for group play
The ranking of teams in the group stage is determined as follows: [202]
  1. Points obtained in all group matches:
    • Win: 3 points;
    • Draw: 1 point;
    • Loss: 0 points;
  2. Goal difference in all group matches;
  3. Number of goals scored in all group matches;
  4. Points obtained in the matches played between the teams in question;
  5. Goal difference in the matches played between the teams in question;
  6. Number of goals scored in the matches played between the teams in question;
  7. Fair play points in all group matches (only one deduction can be applied to a player in a single match):
    • Yellow card: −1 point;
    • Indirect red card (second yellow card): −3 points;
    • Direct red card: −4 points;
    • Yellow card and direct red card: −5 points;
  8. Drawing of lots.

Group A

1Flag of the Netherlands.svg  Netherlands 321051+47Advance to knockout stage
2Flag of Senegal.svg  Senegal 320154+16
3Flag of Ecuador.svg  Ecuador 311143+14
4Flag of Qatar.svg  Qatar (H)30031760
Source: FIFA
(H) Host
Qatar  Flag of Qatar.svg 0–2 Flag of Ecuador.svg  Ecuador
  • Valencia Soccerball shade.svg16' (pen.), 31'
Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor
Attendance: 67,372
Referee: Daniele Orsato (Italy)
Senegal  Flag of Senegal.svg 0–2 Flag of the Netherlands.svg  Netherlands
Al Thumama Stadium, Doha
Attendance: 41,721
Referee: Wilton Sampaio (Brazil)

Qatar  Flag of Qatar.svg 1–3 Flag of Senegal.svg  Senegal
Al Thumama Stadium, Doha
Attendance: 41,797
Referee: Antonio Mateu Lahoz (Spain)
Netherlands  Flag of the Netherlands.svg 1–1 Flag of Ecuador.svg  Ecuador

Ecuador  Flag of Ecuador.svg 1–2 Flag of Senegal.svg  Senegal
Netherlands  Flag of the Netherlands.svg 2–0 Flag of Qatar.svg  Qatar
Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor
Attendance: 66,784
Referee: Bakary Gassama (Gambia)

Group B

1Flag of England.svg  England 321092+77Advance to knockout stage
2Flag of the United States.svg  United States 312021+15
3Flag of Iran.svg  Iran 31024733
4Flag of Wales (1959-present).svg  Wales 30121651
Source: FIFA
England  Flag of England.svg 6–2 Flag of Iran.svg  Iran
United States  Flag of the United States.svg 1–1 Flag of Wales (1959-present).svg  Wales

Wales  Flag of Wales (1959-present).svg 0–2 Flag of Iran.svg  Iran
England  Flag of England.svg 0–0 Flag of the United States.svg  United States
Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor
Attendance: 68,463
Referee: Jesús Valenzuela (Venezuela)

Wales  Flag of Wales (1959-present).svg 0–3 Flag of England.svg  England
Iran  Flag of Iran.svg 0–1 Flag of the United States.svg  United States
Al Thumama Stadium, Doha
Attendance: 42,127
Referee: Antonio Mateu Lahoz (Spain)

Group C

1Flag of Argentina.svg  Argentina 320152+36Advance to knockout stage
2Flag of Poland.svg  Poland 31112204
3Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico 31112314
4Flag of Saudi Arabia.svg  Saudi Arabia 31023523
Source: FIFA
Argentina  Flag of Argentina.svg 1–2 Flag of Saudi Arabia.svg  Saudi Arabia
Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail
Attendance: 88,012
Referee: Slavko Vinčić (Slovenia)
Mexico  Flag of Mexico.svg 0–0 Flag of Poland.svg  Poland
Stadium 974, Doha
Attendance: 39,369
Referee: Chris Beath (Australia)

Poland  Flag of Poland.svg 2–0 Flag of Saudi Arabia.svg  Saudi Arabia
Education City Stadium, Al Rayyan
Attendance: 44,259
Referee: Wilton Sampaio (Brazil)
Argentina  Flag of Argentina.svg 2–0 Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico
Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail
Attendance: 88,966
Referee: Daniele Orsato (Italy)

Poland  Flag of Poland.svg 0–2 Flag of Argentina.svg  Argentina
Stadium 974, Doha
Attendance: 44,089
Referee: Danny Makkelie (Netherlands)
Saudi Arabia  Flag of Saudi Arabia.svg 1–2 Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico
Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail
Attendance: 84,985
Referee: Michael Oliver (England)

Group D

1Flag of France.svg  France 320163+36Advance to knockout stage
2Flag of Australia (converted).svg  Australia 32013416
3Flag of Tunisia.svg  Tunisia 31111104
4Flag of Denmark.svg  Denmark 30121321
Source: FIFA
Denmark  Flag of Denmark.svg 0–0 Flag of Tunisia.svg  Tunisia
France  Flag of France.svg 4–1 Flag of Australia (converted).svg  Australia
Al Janoub Stadium, Al Wakrah
Attendance: 40,875
Referee: Victor Gomes (South Africa)

Tunisia  Flag of Tunisia.svg 0–1 Flag of Australia (converted).svg  Australia
Al Janoub Stadium, Al Wakrah
Attendance: 41,823
Referee: Daniel Siebert (Germany)
France  Flag of France.svg 2–1 Flag of Denmark.svg  Denmark
Stadium 974, Doha
Attendance: 42,860
Referee: Szymon Marciniak (Poland)

Australia  Flag of Australia (converted).svg 1–0 Flag of Denmark.svg  Denmark
Al Janoub Stadium, Al Wakrah
Attendance: 41,232
Referee: Mustapha Ghorbal (Algeria)
Tunisia  Flag of Tunisia.svg 1–0 Flag of France.svg  France

Group E

1Flag of Japan.svg  Japan 320143+16Advance to knockout stage
2Flag of Spain.svg  Spain 311193+64
3Flag of Germany.svg  Germany 311165+14
4Flag of Costa Rica.svg  Costa Rica 310231183
Source: FIFA
Germany  Flag of Germany.svg 1–2 Flag of Japan.svg  Japan
Spain  Flag of Spain.svg 7–0 Flag of Costa Rica.svg  Costa Rica

Japan  Flag of Japan.svg 0–1 Flag of Costa Rica.svg  Costa Rica
Ahmad bin Ali Stadium, Al Rayyan
Attendance: 41,479
Referee: Michael Oliver (England)
Spain  Flag of Spain.svg 1–1 Flag of Germany.svg  Germany
Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor
Attendance: 68,895
Referee: Danny Makkelie (Netherlands)

Japan  Flag of Japan.svg 2–1 Flag of Spain.svg  Spain
Costa Rica  Flag of Costa Rica.svg 2–4 Flag of Germany.svg  Germany
Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor
Attendance: 67,054
Referee: Stéphanie Frappart (France)

Group F

1Flag of Morocco.svg  Morocco 321041+37Advance to knockout stage
2Flag of Croatia.svg  Croatia 312041+35
3Flag of Belgium (civil).svg  Belgium 31111214
4Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg  Canada 30032750
Source: FIFA
Morocco  Flag of Morocco.svg 0–0 Flag of Croatia.svg  Croatia
Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor
Attendance: 59,407
Referee: Fernando Rapallini (Argentina)
Belgium  Flag of Belgium (civil).svg 1–0 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg  Canada
Ahmad bin Ali Stadium, Al Rayyan
Attendance: 40,432
Referee: Janny Sikazwe (Zambia)

Belgium  Flag of Belgium (civil).svg 0–2 Flag of Morocco.svg  Morocco
Al Thumama Stadium, Doha
Attendance: 43,738
Referee: César Arturo Ramos (Mexico)
Croatia  Flag of Croatia.svg 4–1 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg  Canada

Croatia  Flag of Croatia.svg 0–0 Flag of Belgium (civil).svg  Belgium
Ahmad bin Ali Stadium, Al Rayyan
Attendance: 43,984
Referee: Anthony Taylor (England)
Canada  Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg 1–2 Flag of Morocco.svg  Morocco
Al Thumama Stadium, Doha
Attendance: 43,102
Referee: Raphael Claus (Brazil)

Group G

1Flag of Brazil.svg  Brazil (A)220030+36Advance to knockout stage
2Flag of Switzerland (Pantone).svg  Switzerland 21011103
3Flag of Cameroon.svg  Cameroon 20113411
4Flag of Serbia.svg  Serbia 20113521
Updated to match(es) played on 28 November 2022. Source: FIFA
(A) Advance to a further round
Switzerland  Flag of Switzerland (Pantone).svg 1–0 Flag of Cameroon.svg  Cameroon
Al Janoub Stadium, Al Wakrah
Attendance: 39,089
Referee: Facundo Tello (Argentina)
Brazil  Flag of Brazil.svg 2–0 Flag of Serbia.svg  Serbia
Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail
Attendance: 88,103
Referee: Alireza Faghani (Iran)

Brazil  Flag of Brazil.svg 1–0 Flag of Switzerland (Pantone).svg  Switzerland
Stadium 974, Doha
Attendance: 43,649
Referee: Iván Barton (El Salvador)

Serbia  Flag of Serbia.svg Match 47 Flag of Switzerland (Pantone).svg  Switzerland
Cameroon  Flag of Cameroon.svg Match 48 Flag of Brazil.svg  Brazil

Group H

1Flag of Portugal.svg  Portugal (A)220052+36Advance to knockout stage
2Flag of Ghana.svg  Ghana 21015503
3Flag of South Korea.svg  South Korea 20112311
4Flag of Uruguay.svg  Uruguay 20110221
Updated to match(es) played on 28 November 2022. Source: FIFA
(A) Advance to a further round
Uruguay  Flag of Uruguay.svg 0–0 Flag of South Korea.svg  South Korea
Portugal  Flag of Portugal.svg 3–2 Flag of Ghana.svg  Ghana
Stadium 974, Doha
Attendance: 42,662
Referee: Ismail Elfath (United States)

South Korea  Flag of South Korea.svg 2–3 Flag of Ghana.svg  Ghana
Portugal  Flag of Portugal.svg 2–0 Flag of Uruguay.svg  Uruguay
Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail
Attendance: 88,668
Referee: Alireza Faghani (Iran)

Ghana  Flag of Ghana.svg Match 45 Flag of Uruguay.svg  Uruguay
South Korea  Flag of South Korea.svg Match 46 Flag of Portugal.svg  Portugal

Knockout stage

In the knockout stage, if the scores are equal at the end of normal playing time, extra time is played for two periods of 15 minutes each. This is followed, if necessary, by a penalty shoot-out to determine the winners. [202]

Qualified teams

(position TBD)
A Flag of the Netherlands.svg  Netherlands Flag of Senegal.svg  Senegal
B Flag of England.svg  England Flag of the United States.svg  United States
C Flag of Argentina.svg  Argentina Flag of Poland.svg  Poland
D Flag of France.svg  France Flag of Australia (converted).svg  Australia
E Flag of Japan.svg  Japan Flag of Spain.svg  Spain
F Flag of Morocco.svg  Morocco Flag of Croatia.svg  Croatia
G Flag of Brazil.svg  Brazil
H Flag of Portugal.svg  Portugal


Round of 16 Quarter-finals Semi-finals Final
3 December – Al Rayyan (Khalifa)
Flag of the Netherlands.svg  Netherlands
9 December – Lusail
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
Winners Match 49
3 December – Al Rayyan (Ahmad bin Ali)
Winners Match 50
Flag of Argentina.svg  Argentina
13 December – Lusail
Flag of Australia (converted).svg  Australia
Winners Match 57
5 December – Al Wakrah
Winners Match 58
Flag of Japan.svg  Japan
9 December – Al Rayyan (Education)
Flag of Croatia.svg  Croatia
Winners Match 53
5 December – Doha (974)
Winners Match 54
Winners Group G
18 December – Lusail
Runners-up Group H
Winners Match 61
4 December – Al Khor
Winners Match 62
Flag of England.svg  England
10 December – Al Khor
Flag of Senegal.svg  Senegal
Winners Match 51
4 December – Doha (Al Thumama)
Winners Match 52
Flag of France.svg  France
14 December – Al Khor
Flag of Poland.svg  Poland
Winners Match 59
6 December – Al Rayyan (Education)
Winners Match 60 Third place play-off
Flag of Morocco.svg  Morocco
10 December – Doha (Al Thumama) 17 December – Al Rayyan (Khalifa)
Flag of Spain.svg  Spain
Winners Match 55Losers Match 61
6 December – Lusail
Winners Match 56Losers Match 62
Winners Group H
Runners-up Group G

Round of 16

Argentina  Flag of Argentina.svg Match 50 Flag of Australia (converted).svg  Australia

France  Flag of France.svg Match 52 Flag of Poland.svg  Poland

England  Flag of England.svg Match 51 Flag of Senegal.svg  Senegal

Japan  Flag of Japan.svg Match 53 Flag of Croatia.svg  Croatia

Winners Group G Match 54 Runners-up Group H

Morocco  Flag of Morocco.svg Match 55 Flag of Spain.svg  Spain

Winners Group H Match 56 Runners-up Group G


Winners Match 53 Match 58 Winners Match 54

Winners Match 49 Match 57 Winners Match 50

Winners Match 55 Match 60 Winners Match 56

Winners Match 51 Match 59 Winners Match 52


Winners Match 57 Match 61 Winners Match 58

Winners Match 59 Match 62 Winners Match 60

Third place play-off

Losers Match 61 Match 63 Losers Match 62


Winners Match 61 Match 64 Winners Match 62



There have been 109 goals scored in 44 matches, for an average of 2.48 goals per match (as of 1 December 2022). Players highlighted in bold are still active in the competition.

3 goals

2 goals

1 goal

1 own goal

Source: FIFA


A player or team official is automatically suspended for the next match for the following offences: [202]

The following suspensions are served during the tournament:

Flag of Wales (1959-present).svg Wayne Hennessey Red card.svg in Group B vs Iran (matchday 2; 25 November) Group B vs England (matchday 3; 29 November)
Flag of Iran.svg Alireza Jahanbakhsh Yellow card.svg in Group B vs England (matchday 1; 21 November)
Yellow card.svg in Group B vs Wales (matchday 2; 25 November)
Group B vs United States (matchday 3; 29 November)
Flag of Ecuador.svg Sebas Méndez Yellow card.svg in Group A vs Qatar (matchday 1; 20 November)
Yellow card.svg in Group A vs Netherlands (matchday 2; 25 November)
Group A vs Senegal (matchday 3; 29 November)
Flag of Saudi Arabia.svg Abdulellah Al-Malki Yellow card.svg in Group C vs Argentina (matchday 1; 22 November)
Yellow card.svg in Group C vs Poland (matchday 2; 26 November)
Group C vs Mexico (matchday 3; 30 November)
Flag of Costa Rica.svg Francisco Calvo Yellow card.svg in Group E vs Spain (matchday 1; 23 November)
Yellow card.svg in Group E vs Japan (matchday 2; 27 November)
Group E vs Germany (matchday 3; 1 December)
Flag of Belgium (civil).svg Amadou Onana Yellow card.svg in Group F vs Canada (matchday 1; 23 November)
Yellow card.svg in Group F vs Morocco (matchday 2; 27 November)
Group F vs Croatia (matchday 3; 1 December)
Flag of South Korea.svg Paulo Bento (manager)Red card.svg in Group H vs Ghana (matchday 2; 28 November) Group H vs Portugal (matchday 3; 2 December)
Flag of Senegal.svg Idrissa Gueye Yellow card.svg in Group A vs Netherlands (matchday 1; 21 November)
Yellow card.svg in Group A vs Ecuador (matchday 3; 29 November)
Round of 16 vs England (4 December)
Flag of Saudi Arabia.svg Abdulelah Al-Amri Yellow card.svg in Group C vs Poland (matchday 2; 26 November)
Yellow card.svg in Group C vs Mexico (matchday 3; 30 November)
Team eliminated from tournament
Flag of Japan.svg Ko Itakura Yellow card.svg in Group E vs Costa Rica (matchday 2; 27 November)
Yellow card.svg in Group E vs Spain (matchday 3; 1 December)
Round of 16 vs Croatia (5 December)



The official emblem was designed by Lisbon-based Brandia Central branding agency and unveiled in September 2019, during simultaneous events at the Doha Tower, Katara Cultural Village Amphitheatre, Msheireb Downtown Doha, and Zubarah. It is designed to resemble the tournament trophy, the infinity symbol, and the number "8", reflecting upon the "interconnected" event and the eight host stadiums. It also evokes imagery of shawls to signify the tournament's late fall scheduling, and contains waves resembling desert dunes. The typography of the emblem's wordmark incorporates kashida—the practice of elongating certain parts of characters in Arabic script to provide typographical emphasis. [203] [204] [205]


Electronic Arts released the 2022 FIFA World Cup DLC in their video game FIFA 23 on 9 November 2022. The expansion includes a World Cup tournament mode with all teams and stadiums from the event, official television presentation elements, and theming, a multiplayer online tournament mode. [206] Instead of being connected to FIFA Ultimate Team, the DLC includes a "World Cup Live" mode, which lets players emulate that day's matches.[ citation needed ]

On 24 August 2022, Panini produced themed stickers and a sticker album for a 14th consecutive World Cup. [207] Collectors are meant to open player packs and use them to fill their sticker book with all 32 participating teams. This year, rare cards with coloured borders "parallels" can be found, and can be collected, traded, or sold. [208]

On 12 April 2022, FIFA released an OTT service and app revolving around the World Cup called FIFA+, where fans could play games, predict matches, and compete with others. [209]

In commemoration of the tournament, Google have released a free, mobile mini game called "Mini Cup". For every live match of the World Cup, fans can join a side and swipe to score penalties for their team, adding to the nation's total tally. [210]

Broadcasting rights

In May 2022, Infantino projected that the 2022 FIFA World Cup could be the most-watched in its history, with a global audience of at least 5 billion. The 2018 tournament was seen by 3.57 billion across the tournament. [211] The various controversies surrounding the World Cup in Qatar has led to questions over how the tournament will be covered in the media, and whether they will be discussed or addressed during coverage. [212] [213] David Neal, executive producer for U.S. English rightsholder Fox Sports, stated that the broadcaster did not plan to cover issues that are "ancillary" to the tournament unless they "become prevalent and apparent", saying that "[viewers] don't come to us expecting us to be Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel , or E:60 ". [213]

In February 2015, FIFA extended its media rights contracts in Canada and the United States with Bell Media (Canada), Fox (U.S. English), and NBCUniversal (U.S. Spanish) to last through 2026, without taking any competing offers. The New York Times reported that this decision was likely intended as compensation for the rescheduling of the 2022 World Cup, as the new scheduling places the tournament in competition with major professional sports leagues in North America, such as the National Football League. [214] [215] [216] The group stage did benefit from matches occurring during the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday weekend, when the England–U.S. group stage match was seen by approximately 20 million viewers across both Fox and Telemundo, ranking among the highest-rated associated football broadcasts in U.S. history (the highest was a 2014 World Cup match that drew 24.7 million). [217] [218]


FIFA partnersFIFA World Cup sponsorsAfrican and Middle Eastern supportersAsian supportersEuropean supportersNorth American supportersSouth American supporters



The tournament's official mascot was unveiled on 1 April 2022, during the group stage draw. Its name is Laʼeeb (Arabic : لعيب, romanized: Laʿīb), which is an Arabic word meaning "super-skilled player". The official website of FIFA says: "Laʼeeb will be known for his youthful spirit; spreading joy and confidence everywhere he goes", and the official backstory of the character, published there, claims that it comes from a parallel world where tournament mascots live, "a world where ideas and creativity form the basis of characters that live in the minds of everyone". [251]

Match ball

Al Rihla used in an Austrian Bundesliga match in October 2022. Adidas Ah Rihla (cropped).jpg
Al Rihla used in an Austrian Bundesliga match in October 2022.

The official match ball, "Al Rihla", was unveiled on 30 March 2022. It was mainly inspired by the culture, architecture, iconic boats and flag of Qatar. In Arabic, the word Al Rihla (الْرِّحْلَةar-riḥla) means "the journey". The ball was designed with sustainability as a priority, making it the first ever official match ball created with water-based glues and inks. As "the game is getting faster" and "speeds up", the Adidas ball has internal electronic sensors, allowing detection of its speed and position, updated 500 times per second. [252]


For the first time, a full FIFA World Cup official soundtrack has been released, instead of one official song. [253] The first song of the album is "Hayya Hayya (Better Together)", performed by Trinidad Cardona, Davido and AISHA, released on 1 April 2022 along with the music video. [254] The second song is "Arhbo", performed by Gims and Ozuna, released on 19 August 2022 along with the music video. [255] The third song is "Light The Sky" performed by Nora Fatehi, Manal, Rahma Riad and Balqees, composed by RedOne and released on 7 October 2022 along with the music video.[ citation needed ] A fourth song, "Tukoh Taka", performed by Maluma, Nicki Minaj and Myriam Fares, was released on 17 November 2022 along with the music video, serving as the official song of the FIFA Fan Festival. [256] The fifth and final song, "Dreamers", performed by Jungkook of BTS featuring backing vocals from Qatari singer Fahad Al Kubaisi, was released on 20 November 2022, the opening day of the World Cup and also performed during the opening ceremony. [257] [258]


The selection of Qatar as the host country has been controversial. [8] [9] [11] [14] The controversies surrounding the World Cup in Qatar were described as a cultural conflict or "Clash of Civilizations" between authoritarian Islamic regimes and secular liberal democracies. [8] [9] [11] Charlie Campbell of Time Magazine additionally noted the dispute as dually representative of the declining influence of the West in both football and geopolitics. [71] The Economist provided a defence for FIFA's choice, stating that Qatar was "a more suitable country to host a big sporting event" than both China and Russia, who hosted the 2022 Winter Olympics and the 2018 World Cup respectively, and both of whom arguably have worse human rights records. [259] Moreover, it added that "Western criticism" failed to "distinguish between truly repugnant regimes and merely flawed ones", and that many "indignant pundits" simply sounded as if they did "not like Muslims or rich people". [259]

A number of groups and media outlets have expressed concern over the suitability of Qatar to host the event, [8] [9] [260] [261] with regard to human rights, [8] [9] focusing on worker conditions and the rights of LGBT fans because of the illegality of homosexuality in Qatar. [8] [9] [261] [262] [263] [264]

In December 2020, Qatar said rainbow flags would be allowed at the 2022 World Cup. [265] Qatari officials initially stated that they would not prohibit the display of pride flags at tournament venues, in accordance with FIFA's inclusivity policies, although the country still advised LGBT attendees to comply with the country's modesty and avoid public displays of affection. [266] [267] Hassan Abdulla al-Thawadi, chief executive of the country's 2022 World Cup bid, said that Qatar would permit alcohol consumption during the event, [268] [269] even though drinking in public is not permitted, as the country's legal system is based on Islamic law (sharīʿa). [270] There were plans to allow the sale of alcohol inside stadiums and at fan villages. [271] Normally, the sale of alcohol is restricted to non-Muslim guests at selected luxury hotels only. [272]

However, in the months preceding the tournament, Qatar walked back on both commitments: security officials warned in April 2022 that pride flags could be confiscated to protect attendees from potential conflicts with attendees who do not support LGBT rights, [273] [274] and the sale of alcohol to fans within the stadiums was prohibited just days before the opening match. [275] [276] This also led to concerns about what other commitments may be rolled back. [275] [277]

Also in the days preceding the opening of the competition, controversy arose around the change of rules surrounding the paid-for fans. [278]

The climate conditions caused some to call hosting the tournament in Qatar infeasible, with initial plans for air-conditioned stadiums giving way to a potential date switch from summer to November and December. [8] In May 2014, Sepp Blatter, who was FIFA president at the time of the selection but later banned for illegal payments, remarked that awarding the World Cup to Qatar was a "mistake" because of the extreme heat. [8] [279] [280] While addressing delegates from African and Asian confederations, Blatter said allegations of corruption and some of the criticism, including those from sponsors, were "very much linked to racism and discrimination". [281] The attendance figures at the matches have also come under scrutiny as the reported crowd attendance has been more than the stadium capacities despite games having visible empty seats. [282]

Prior to the tournament, a reporter for Denmark's TV 2 was threatened by security during a live report from Katara; the organising committee apologised, stating that they were "mistakenly interrupted". [283] Tony O'Donoghue of Ireland's RTÉ also accused Qatari police of interrupting him while filming. [284]

On 5 November 2022, The Sunday Times and the Bureau of Investigative Journalism published an investigation reporting that a "hack-for-hire" group from Indian hacking company "WhiteInt" based in Gurgaon had compromised the email accounts and other private communications channels of various politicians, reporters, and other prominent individuals that had been critical of Qatar's hosting of the World Cup. It was also reported that the group had been hired by Jonas Rey, private investigators based in Switzerland, which were in turn hired by Qatari officials. [285]

In November 2022, just before the tournament kicked off, Blatter again stated that awarding the tournament to Qatar was a "mistake". He remarked that the nation is "too small of a country" to host the tournament and that "football and the World Cup are too big for it". [286]

Migrant workers

The issue of migrant workers' rights also attracted attention, [8] with a 2013 investigation by The Guardian newspaper claiming that many workers were denied food and water, had their identity papers taken away from them, compelled to forced labor, and that they were not paid on time or at all, making some of them effectively slaves. [287] The Guardian estimated that, [287] by the time the competition would be held, without reforms of the kafala system, out of the 2 million-strong migrant workforce [288] up to 4,000 workers could die due to lax safety and other causes. [289] These claims were based upon the fact that 522 Nepalese [290] workers and over 700 Indian [287] workers had died since 2010, when Qatar's bid as World Cup's host had been won, about 250 Indian workers dying each year. [291] Given that there were half a million Indian workers in Qatar, the Indian government said that was quite a normal number of deaths. [291]

In 2015, a crew of four journalists from the BBC were arrested and held for two days after they attempted to report on the condition of workers in the country. [292] The reporters had been invited to visit the country as guests of the Government of Qatar. [292] The Wall Street Journal reported in June 2015 the International Trade Union Confederation's claim that over 1,200 workers had died while working on infrastructure and real-estate projects related to the World Cup, and the Qatar Government's counter-claim that none had. [293] The BBC later reported that this often-cited figure of 1,200 workers having died in World Cup construction in Qatar between 2011 and 2013 is not correct, and that the 1,200 number is instead representing deaths from all Indians and Nepalese working in Qatar, not just of those workers involved in the preparation for the World Cup, and not just of construction workers. [291]

Most Qatari nationals avoid doing manual work or low-skilled jobs. They are given preference in the workplace. [294] Michael van Praag, president of the Royal Dutch Football Association, requested the FIFA Executive Committee to pressure Qatar over those allegations to ensure better workers' conditions. He also stated that a new vote on the attribution of the World Cup to Qatar would have to take place if the corruption allegations were to be proved. [295]

In March 2016, Amnesty International accused Qatar of using forced labour, forcing the employees to live in poor conditions, and withholding their wages and passports. It also accused FIFA of failing to stop the stadium from being built on "human right abuses." [296] Migrant workers told Amnesty about verbal abuse and threats they received after complaining about not being paid for up to several months. Nepali workers were even denied leave to visit their family after the 2015 Nepal earthquake. [297]

In October 2017, the International Trade Union Confederation said that Qatar had signed an agreement to improve the situation of more than 2 million migrant workers in the country. According to the ITUC, the agreement provided for establishing substantial reforms in labour system, including ending the Kafala system. The ITUC also stated that the agreement would positively affect the general situation of workers, especially those who work on the 2022 FIFA World Cup infrastructure projects. The workers will no longer need their employer's permission to leave the country or change their jobs. [298] Amnesty International have questioned whether Qatar would complete the promised labour reforms before the start of the World Cup, a sentiment that FIFA backed. Amnesty International found that abuses were still occurring despite the nation taking some steps to improve labour rights. [299]

In May 2019, an investigation by the UK's Daily Mirror newspaper discovered some of the 28,000 workers on the stadiums are being paid 750 Qatari riyals per month, which is equivalent to £190 per month or 99 pence an hour for a typical 48-hour week. [300] Hendriks Graszoden, the turf supplier for the 2006 World Cup and for the European Championships in 2008 and 2016, refused to supply Qatar with World Cup turf. According to company spokesperson Gerdien Vloet, one reason for this decision was the accusations of human rights abuses. [301]

In April 2020, the government of Qatar provided $824 million to pay the wages of migrant workers in quarantine or undergoing treatment for COVID-19. [302] [303] Later that year, the Qatari government announced a monthly minimum wage for all workers of 1,000 riyals (US$275), an increase from the previous temporary minimum wage of 750 riyals a month. [304] [305] The new laws went into effect in March 2021. [306] The International Labour Organization said "Qatar is the first country in the region to introduce a non-discriminatory minimum wage, which is a part of a series of historical reforms of the country's labour laws," [307] while the campaign group Migrant Rights said the new minimum wage was too low to meet migrant workers' need with Qatar's high cost of living. [308]

Employers are obligated to pay 300 riyals for food and 500 riyals for accommodation, if they do not provide employees with these directly. The No Objection Certificate was removed so that employees can change jobs without consent of their existing employer. A Minimum Wage Committee was also formed to check on the implementation. [309] These reforms removed the kafala system and a contractual system was introduced. [288] [310]

An investigative report published by The Guardian used data from embassies and national foreign employment offices to estimate migrant worker death toll since World Cup was awarded to Qatar. Between 2010 and late 2020 over 6,500 migrant workers from India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nepal and Sri Lanka have died in Qatar. [311] Note that this figure includes deaths of all migrant workers in Qatar, who number more than 2 million; and not only those employed in the construction of the stadiums. It also includes deaths from all causes, including natural causes, suicides, along with those caused through negligence. At the 2022 FIFA Congress in Doha, Lise Klaveness—head of the Norwegian Football Federation—criticised the organisation for having awarded the World Cup to Qatar, citing the various controversies surrounding the tournament. She argued that "in 2010 World Cups were awarded by FIFA in unacceptable ways with unacceptable consequences. Human rights, equality, democracy: the core interests of football were not in the starting XI until many years later. These basic rights were pressured onto the field as substitutes by outside voices. FIFA has addressed these issues but there's still a long way to go." [312] [313] Hassan al-Thawadi, secretary general of Qatar 2022, criticised her remarks for ignoring the country's recent labour reforms. [313] The European Union's Annual Report on Human Rights and Democracy in the World 2021 noted Qatar's labour law reforms had incorporated non-discriminatory minimum wage systems and removal of the Kafala system in 2021. [314]

In March 2022, FIFA president Gianni Infantino claimed in an interview that the Gulf nation is being progressive in terms of the labour rights and migrant rights issues that prevailed previously, adding "I am pleased to see the strong commitment from the Qatari authorities to ensure the reforms are fully implemented across the labour market, leaving a lasting legacy of the FIFA World Cup long after the event, and benefiting migrant workers in the host country in the long term." [315] [316] Shortly before the tournament, France 24 broadcast a report titled "The plight of migrant workers in Qatar", adding more details to the controversy and how many reform laws have not been followed. [317]

In a news conference preceding the tournament on 19 November 2022, Infantino defended criticism of Qatar from the West as hypocritical, stating that "I think for what we Europeans have been doing for 3,000 years around the world, we should be apologising for the next 3,000 years before starting to give moral lessons to people." He asked, "how many of these European companies who earn millions and millions from Qatar or other countries in the region—billions every year—how many of them have addressed migrant worker rights? I have the answer: none of them, because if they change the legislation it means less profits. But we did. And FIFA generated much, much, much less than any of these companies, from Qatar." [318] [319]

Move to November and December

Owing to the climate in Qatar, concerns were expressed over holding the World Cup in its traditional timeframe of June and July. [8] In October 2013, a task force was commissioned to consider alternative dates and report after the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil. [320] On 24 February 2015, the FIFA Task Force proposed that the tournament be played from late November to late December 2022, [321] to avoid the summer heat between May and September and also avoid clashing with the 2022 Winter Olympics in February, the 2022 Winter Paralympics in March and Ramadan in April. [322] [323]

The notion of staging the tournament in November is controversial since it would interfere with the regular season schedules of some domestic leagues around the world. Commentators have noted the clash with the Western Christmas season is likely to cause disruption, whilst there is concern about how short the tournament is intended to be. [324] FIFA executive committee member Theo Zwanziger said that awarding the 2022 World Cup to Qatar was a "blatant mistake". [325]

Frank Lowy, chairman of Football Federation Australia, said that if the 2022 World Cup were moved to November and thus upset the schedule of the A-League, they would seek compensation from FIFA. [326] Richard Scudamore, chief executive of the Premier League, stated that they would consider legal action against FIFA because a move would interfere with the Premier League's popular Christmas and New Year fixture programme. [327] On 19 March 2015, FIFA sources confirmed that the final would be played on 18 December. [328]

Critics have condemned the Euro-centrism of these allegations, and demanded why global sporting events must be held within the traditional European summer season. [329]

Bidding corruption allegations, 2014

Qatar has faced growing pressure over its hosting of the World Cup in relation to allegations over the role of former top football official Mohammed bin Hammam played in securing the bid. [330] A former employee of the Qatar bid team alleged[ year needed ] that several African officials were paid $1.5 million by Qatar. [331] She retracted her claims, but later said that she was coerced to do so by Qatari bid officials. [332] [333]

In March 2014, it was discovered that disgraced former CONCACAF president Jack Warner and his family were paid almost $2 million from a firm linked to Qatar's successful campaign. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is investigating Warner and his alleged links to the Qatari bid. [334]

The Sunday Times published bribery allegations based on a leak of millions of secret documents. [335]

In June 2014, five of FIFA's six primary sponsors, Sony, Adidas, Visa, Hyundai, and Coca-Cola, called upon FIFA to investigate the claims. [336] [337] Jim Boyce, vice president of FIFA, stated he would support a re-vote to find a new host if the corruption allegations are proven. [338] [339] FIFA completed a lengthy investigation into these allegations and a report cleared Qatar of any wrongdoing. Despite the claims, the Qataris insist that the corruption allegations are being driven by envy and mistrust while Sepp Blatter said it is fuelled by racism in the British media. [340] [341]

In the 2015 FIFA corruption case, Swiss officials, operating under information from the United States Department of Justice, arrested many senior FIFA officials in Zurich, Switzerland and seized physical and electronic records from FIFA's main headquarters. The arrests continued in the United States, where several FIFA officers were arrested, and FIFA buildings were raided. The arrests were made on the information of at least a $150 million (USD) corruption and bribery scandal. [342] [