Doha [Qatar], July 9 (ANI): With only 500 days to go until Qatar hosts the first FIFA World Cup in the Middle East and Arab world, the Qatari officials have informed that five out of the eight stadiums are completed and the rest will be ready by the end of this year.
The 22nd edition of the tournament will kick off on November 21, 2022, when Qatar -- the reigning champions of Asia -- take their FIFA World Cup bow at the tournament's first match at the stunning 60,000-seat Al Bayt Stadium in Al Khor City.
Qatar will host the most compact version of the tournament in modern history. All eight stadiums are within 50km of central Doha, while fans, players, and officials will be able to stay in one accommodation throughout the event, which will conclude with the final at the 80,000-seat Lusail Stadium on December 18, 2022 -- which is also Qatar National Day.
It promises to be a festival of football like no other -- with everyone always in the thick of the action and never far from a stadium, fan zone, or tourist attraction. Nasser Al Khater, CEO of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, spoke of his country's pride in hosting the biggest single-sport event in the world.
"Five-hundred days to go means we're getting very close," said Al Khater in a release by AFC. "It's been 10 years in the making and this will be the biggest event that's ever happened in the Middle East. It will bring the region together and be a moment of pride in the history of the world. As we move closer to the tournament, we are sure the excitement is going to build even further."
Al Khater went on to say he believes the compact tournament footprint is one of Qatar's unique selling points for fans as they begin planning their trips to the country.
"The compact nature is probably the most positive aspect of this World Cup," said Al Khater. "For fans, they won't have to follow their team from city to city, which means there will be a significant cost saving and means they will have time to take in the ambiance and enjoy what Qatar has to offer."
The SC's Yasir Al Jamal, Vice Chairman, Technical Delivery Office, and Chairman, Operations Office, said Qatar's FIFA World Cup infrastructure projects had reached 95 per cent completion, with all the stadiums set to be ready by the end of the year. (ANI)