Football comes home to Qatar

World Cup 2022

With just two years left before Qatar hosts the most prestigious football event, the FIFA World Cup, excitement is escalating across the country as preparations continue to make sporting history in the Arab world.

Since winning the bid to host the 2022 World Cup tournament ten years ago, Qatar and the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SC) have been working endlessly to ensure this event goes down in football history.

Coming to a Middle Eastern country for the first time ever, Qatar is sparing no expenses to make this renowned tournament a memorable one for the country and its people, for the hundreds of players who will be part of the games and for the millions of football fans all around the world.

Majestic stadiums are steadily being erected across the country, the transport system is undergoing an overhaul and local businesses are gearing up to deal with heavier footfall during the tournament, all in preparation for this iconic cup.

Qatar has already done a tremendous job in establishing itself as a Middle East sports hub by being one of the first Arab nations to play host to a number of global championships and events, so the World Cup heading to Qatar comes as no surprise.

Mon, Nov 21, 2022 – Sun, Dec 18, 2022

Host country: Qatar

Lusail Iconic Stadium, 
Al Bayt Stadium, 
Ras Abu Aboud Stadium, 
Al Thumama Stadium, 
Education City Stadium, 
Al Rayyan Stadium, 
Khalifa  Stadium, 
Al Janoub Stadium

The nation’s unique hosting plans, unveiled at a handover event in Russia, proved that this small Gulf Peninsula is the right choice to take on such a grand event.

The symbolic handover ceremony, which took place after the 2018 World Cup final, at the Kremlin, was attended by the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, and President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin.

I invite all of our friends to come as guests. We really hope our national team will repeat the success of Russia and maybe even go further. We will try to at the very least.

— Sheikh Tamim bin
Hamad Al Thani,

Emir of Qatar

The country sent over a hundred delegates to learn from the Russia 2018 tournament and share their own plans for 2022.

At the event his Highness, the Emir said: “I’d like to express my gratitude to the members of the Russia 2018 Local Organising Committee, who are helping our colleagues from the Qatar 2022 Organising Committee. We look forward to continuing to work alongside our friends from Russia. I invite all of our friends to come as guests. We really hope our national team will repeat the success of Russia and maybe even go further. We will try to at the very least.”

Hassan Al Thawadi, Secretary General of the SC, added: “We are honoured to officially be recognised as the next host of the FIFA World Cup. We have been waiting for this moment since winning the bid in 2010.”

What is the Supreme Committee?

The Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy (SC) was established in Qatar to deliver the infrastructure, planning and operations needed to host the 2022 World Cup tournament.

As well as ensuring that the World Cup stadiums and other infrastructure projects are built on time, the SC must ensure that their preparations for the tournament remain sustainable.

They also have the challenge of showcasing Qatar’s unique identity as an up and coming country, steeped in a rich history of culture and tradition, bringing the elements of new and old together in harmony.

Perhaps more important than preparing for the World Cup, the SC are also working towards creating a lasting legacy — one where infrastructure, education, football for development, and a dedication to improving workers’ welfare, forge to create a better future for Qatar, and ultimately, the Middle East.

Standing tall: The stadiums

A grand physical reminder that a World Cup is heading to Qatar comes via the majestic stadiums, which can be seen across the country. Each one has been designed with Qatari tradition in mind, merging traditional touches with modern innovations.

Al Bayt Stadium

This 60,000 capacity arena will pay homage to the nomadic people of Qatar, with its majestic tent-like structure. And with the sustainability goals of the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy firmly in mind, its creation will also be a model of green development.

Location: Al Khor

Capacity: 60,000

The Ras Abu Aboud Stadium

Location: Doha

Capacity: 40,000

Architect: Fenwick Iribarren Architects

Possibly one of the most unique and innovative stadiums to host a World Cup game, the Ras Abu Aboud Stadium will be constructed using shipping containers, removable seats and modular building blocks. With sustainability in mind, most parts of the stadium will also be dismantled and repurposed after the World Cup.

Al Janoub Stadium

Location: Doha

Capacity: 40,000

Architect: Zaha Hadid

The Al Janoub stadium was built in 2019 and has hosted many memorable football games already, including the Arabian Gulf Cup semi-finals. Situated in one of Qatar’s oldest and most inhabited areas — Al Wakrah — the Al Janoub stadium was inspired by the traditional dhow boats used in the area for pearl diving and fishing.

Al Rayyan Stadium

The new Al Rayyan stadium will host up to 40,000 spectators. The facilities surrounding the venue will also mirror the country, with sand dune-shaped structures recalling the beautifully wild lands to the west.

Location: Al Rayyan

Capacity: 40,000

 Khalifa International Stadium

This iconic stadium was built in 1976 and continues to be a cornerstone of Qatar’s sporting tradition. Since undergoing a refurbishment, the arena now boasts an ultramodern shape and dual arches that represent continuity.

Location: Al Rayyan (Doha area)

Capacity: 45,000

OPENED: 1976

Al Thumama Stadium

Location: Al Thumama

Capacity: 40,000

Architect: Ibrahim M. Jaidah

Currently under construction, this 40,000 seat stadium will be built to represent the gahfiya — a traditional cap worn by men and boys in the Middle East.

Education City Stadium

Location: Al Rayyan (Doha area)

Capacity: 45,350

Architect: Fenwick Iribarren Architects

The Education City Stadium is the latest match-ready World Cup arena to be complete and has garnered much excitement for it’s cutting edge technology and ultra modern design. Once the tournament is over the arena’s capacity will be reduced by half and 20,000 seats will be donated to build stadiums in developing countries.

Lusail Stadium

There are high expectations for the Lusail Stadium, which will host the World Cup final. With a capacity of 80,000 and a billion spectators set to watch from home, the Lusail stadium promises to be one of the most innovative and exciting stadiums constructed.

Location: Lusail (Doha area)

Capacity: 80,000

Architect: Foster + Partners with MANICA Architecture

Sustainability of the World Cup

Sustainability is a key priority for Qatar and the SC, and the Sustainability Strategy will enable them to deliver a World Cup that adheres to this. In fact, it promises to change the way other large sporting events are held in years to come with a sustainable legacy that contributes to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and the Qatar National Vision 2030.


Water consumption at operating stadiums is 40% lower than international requirements


SC is aiming to shift 25% of public buses to electric buses by 2022 for use during the tournament


trees and 80,000 shrubs had been planted in stadium precincts and public spaces across Qatar

Large construction projects are being carefully monitored and controlled to minimise impact on the environment. Waste and water is being reused and recycled where possible with smart controls preventing excessive use of resources.

To host the world’s largest tournament requires building stadiums that are fit for purpose without impacting the environment — especially during construction phase

Remaining carbon neutral is also an ongoing priority. The goal is to offset all greenhouse gas emission and use as many low carbon solutions as possible. Renewable energy solutions are also being used where possible including solar-powered lighting at parking lots.

As well as building stadiums, the SC are committed to opening as many new green spaces as possible. A ‘Tree Nursery’ has also been implemented to help produce thousands of trees and regional plants for more sustainable landscaping. Clever landscape conservation planning has also meant that water consumption at operating stadiums is 40% lower than international requirements.

To reduce the risk of pollution during the World Cup the public transport system has been further developed to encourage spectators to drive less. New bus and tram routes are also being developed around some of the bigger stadiums and the aim is to shift 25% of buses to electric.

Photos: 2 – Alex Grimm/Bongarts/Getty Images, 4 – 2022 Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy via Getty Images, 1, 3, 5-13 –

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