2022 Qatar World Cup tournament's kicks-off on November 21. All eight venues are situated within a 21-mile radius of central Doha and will be linked by a metro system. One of the venues is made up of 974 shipping containers and is fully dismantlable once the World Cup ends. The eight stadiums that will play host to the tournament are primed and ready. They are also eye-catching to say the least.
Capacity: 80,000. Distance from Doha city center: 10 miles. Games: 10, including the final.
The showpiece stadium for the tournament that will host the opening fixture and the final as well as other key matches. The stadium only opened in 2022, very much behind schedule, with the design inspired by the ‘interplay of light and shadow that characterizes the fanar lantern’. At the end of the tournament, most of the seats will be removed and donated to developing countries as the new $42 billion city of Lusail ‘will not need its own football stadium’ after 2022.
Capacity: 60,000 Distance from Doha city center: 27 miles. Games: Eight, including the opening match.
One of the larger stadiums, the Al Bayt will stage matches right through to the semi-finals of the competition. The arena is designed to represent Arab hospitality with the structure looking like a traditional Arab tent known as ‘bayt al sha’ar’. Because temperatures in Qatar can top 90F even in November, it will also have a retractable roof to keep out the heat. It is the furthest stadium from Doha but fans not wanting to leave can stay in its plush five-star hotel and shopping center, which will be opened in the venue.
Capacity: 45,416 Distance from Doha city center: 8 miles Games: Eight, including third-place play-off
This was one of the only stadiums to have been opened before the World Cup was awarded to Qatar, with it initially built in 1976. It also hosted the Emir Cup final in May last year in front of 40,000 spectators. It has been the country’s national stadium since it opened and has been extensively renovated to host the World Cup. It has previously hosted the Asian Games, the Gulf Cup and the AFC Asian Cup and hosted the IAAF World Athletics Championships in 2019.
Capacity: 40,000 Distance from Doha city center: 14 miles. Games: Seven, up to last 16
Formerly known as the Al Wakrah Stadium, the futuristic design of the Al Janoub is inspired by the sails of the dhow boats traditional to the country of Qatar in a nod to the coastal city’s maritime heritage. It boasts a retractable roof and an innovative cooling system to ensure the ground can hold events all year round, even during the searing heat of the summer months. It was the first of the World Cup stadiums to be completed back in the summer of May 2019 and like the Lusail Stadium, will have 20,000 seats removed after the World Cup has finished.
Capacity: 40,000 Distance from Doha city center: 7 miles. Games: Eight, up to quarter-final
This stadium is right inside the Qatar Foundation, just outside the center of Doha, which is well known around the world. Hosting matches through to the quarterfinals; the Education City Stadium is set to become the home of the national women’s team after the world Cup. The stadium takes the shape of a diamond and will be nicknamed ‘the diamond in the desert’ as it is designed to glisten by day and glow at night. It also played host to the 2021 FIFA Club World Cup final.
Capacity: 40,000 Distance from Doha city center: 14 miles. Games: Seven, up to the last 16
This stadium, which also underwent a name charge after initially being called the Al-Rayyan Stadium, will host games up until the quarter-final stage and is meant to be a reflection of Qatari culture. The facade features intricate patterns representing the country of Qatar, from its wildlife to its history of trade. The ground is in proximity to the desert, so the hospitality areas and merchandise stalls outside the ground will be shaped to resemble sand dunes. Located in Al Rayyan, the stadium was built on the site of the old ground with the majority of construction materials reused to erect the Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium.
Capacity: 40,000 Distance from Doha city center: 8 miles. Games: Eight, up to quarter-final
This stadium is inspired by the ‘gahfiya’, a traditional woven cap worn by men across the Middle East, and it’s easy to see in pictures of the stadium. The Al Thumama will also half its capacity after the World Cup, donating the seats to developing countries. A mosque and hotel will also open on the site.
Capacity: 40,000 Distance from Doha city center: 6 miles. Games: Seven, up to last 16
In a first for the World Cup, this stadium has been made from 974 shipping containers and other materials that can easily be dismantled after the tournament finishes. It overlooks the Doha Corniche and the skyline of the West Bay – a waterfront promenade that looks spectacular at night – and will stage games up to the last 16. The aim was to use as few materials as possible and thereby reduce waste and emissions.