Everything That You Need to Know for the Upcoming World Cup

The Qatar 2022 World Cup will occur this November and December 2022. Here is all of the information, updates, and news you must know about this upcoming and festive end-of-year celebration of sport.


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The World Cup is a quadrennial competition that crowns a new football champion once every four years. The most recent World Cup concluded in 2018, when Russia hosted the event. Four years later, the World Cup hosted in Qatar will take place during November to December 2022. “The World Cup only happens every four years, so you should definitely take advantage of the opportunity to watch it,” said Lucy Paolini ’23.

Once every four years, a champion rises to prominence before the entire world.

With millions of fans witnessing their triumph, the winners of the quadrennial competition bring pride not only to themselves but to their country as well. 

Of course, I am referring to the World Cup — a month-long celebration of football, or soccer, as the sport is called in America. In the tournament, thirty-two of the world’s distinguished and qualified teams play a series of elimination matches until one of them emerges victorious. Only eight world nations have ever earned the right to call themselves the “football champions of the world.”

“Similar to all other international competitions, the World Cup is bound to have a few lows. But apart from those, it is a golden time of unity. People from all over the world engage in the sport, as they identify communally through their shared love of the game that is football,” said Zubayer Mahbub ’23.

The first-ever World Cup was hosted in Uruguay, the nation that also won that initial competition in 1930. Since then, the World Cup has primarily taken place every four years, with France winning most recently in the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

“I thoroughly enjoyed the World Cup in France 2018. There were many upsets between nations, where unexpected teams beat some of the greatest nations in world football. There were many factors regarding that World Cup that enthralled me. For instance, the World Cup was held in the summer. So, I was able to watch World Cup matches with my friends and family, due to the fact we were enjoying summer break during that time. My favorite player, Cristiano Ronaldo, also played great in a few games in the World Cup, most notably against Spain. Additionally, the winners of the World Cup were France, a team whose many players I idolize,” said Abdullah Ratol ’25.

Fans celebrate as France wins the World Cup in Russia 2018. The French National Team was the favorite of the tournament, with several experienced, skillful, and accomplished players. The World Cup also allowed several rising superstars, such as Kylian Mbappé and N’Golo Kanté, to showcase their skills and shine in the limelight. (Dorian Hust / Unsplash)

The French National Football Team was the favorite going into the tournament in 2018. They met the expectations of many fans and critics alike as they sealed their victory over the unanticipated Croatian National Team. Captain Luka Modrić and the Croatian players were a dark horse in the competition, surpassing nearly every speculator’s expectations. They, for the first time in their country’s history, progressed through to the World Cup Grand Final by defeating several fan-favorite teams such as Argentina, England, and even the hosts Russia. However, France terminated Croatia’s tremendous by winning 4 – 2. While France’s victory over Croatia still looms large, it is time for a new champion to take center stage in the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

Qatar 2022 will be historic; it will be the first World Cup to take place during the latter half of the year, as Qatar’s intense climate makes the ordinary summer timeline impossible. Either way, avid football fans look forward to the experimental hosting of the competition during November and December 2022 instead of June to July, hoping that the venue will offer a greater experience than Russia did in 2018 and contribute towards more variety. 

Qatar 2022 will make further history, becoming the first World Cup to be held in the Middle East. Considering that the competition originated in South America, it is staggering to witness the extent of its influence. At the first World Cup, there were only thirteen countries that competed, seven of which were South American. Since then, the competition has steadily grown to the tradition of including thirty-two teams from all continental federations, creating eight groups of four teams.

However, this tradition of over fifty years will be renounced as the qualifying matches for Qatar 2022 proved that the inclusion of merely thirty-two is too devastating for several nations. Therefore, starting on the date of the next competition in 2026, the competition will grow to include forty-eight teams, with sixteen groups of three teams each.

Croatian fans rejoice at the country’s victory against England in the semi-finals of the Russia 2018 World Cup. For the first time in the country’s history throughout the competition, Croatia advanced to the Grand Finals — their place on the podium was guaranteed. However, the young team laden with up-and-coming players placed second overall only behind France, a team with more experienced players and the favorites for the competition. (Fleur / Unsplash)

“I think this change will bring more opportunities to nations who haven’t had the chance to play in the World Cup. The World Cup qualifiers are competitive where even some of the biggest footballing nations don’t make it. For example, the Euro 2020 Champions, Italy, were unable to qualify for the World Cup in Qatar. This change would make football even more mainstream for nations around the world. With more nations playing in the world cup, more fans will be supporting their nations. Then there would be even more excitement coming into the World Cup and many more viewers,” said Ratol.

Also, the additional number of teams would necessitate more matches, increasing the total time during which the World Cup takes place — a change that football lovers can most definitely support. “I think more teams are definitely not a problem,” said William Wu ’22.

Concurring with Ratol, Doniell Mejiaduarte ’22 said that “the transformation from thirty-two teams to forty-eight teams is good because maybe my country will finally have a shot at being in the World Cup.”

On the contrary, some football fans, such as Jack Goss ’23, are concerned about the negative aspects that this change may induce. “I don’t really the inclusion of forty-eight teams. All that means is that there will be an increase in the number of filler teams. As it is now, many countries don’t stand a chance. The World Cup is supposed to be a competition between the best of the best, so adding more countries would just be unnecessary, in my opinion,” said Goss.

With the inclusion of sixteen extra teams, the competition is bound to become hectic.

The preparations for Qatar 2022 are complete. Eight of Qatar’s stadiums have been built and the draw for the initial twenty-nine of the tournament’s group stages has been finalized.

With over 30,000 workers who built it, the Khalifa International Stadium in Doha, Qatar remains one of the most prestigious stadiums in the world. The Qatar government ordered a complete renovation of the stadium, since it will be one of the eight stadiums that are going to be used for the World Cup in Qatar. Named after the former Emir of Qatar, Khalid bin Hamed Al Thani, the Khalifa International Stadium will be the standard model for future constructions of stadiums. (adoring, CC BY-SA 4.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0>, via Wikimedia Commons)

Moreover, the World Cup qualifying matches have fully concluded, determining the other three nations that will gain their ticket to the World Cup.

For the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) Playoffs, Ukraine defeated Scotland in the semi-finals with a score of 3 – 1. Afterward, Wales versed Ukraine in the finals where Wales emerged victorious by winning 1 – 0, claiming their spot on the World Cup, and becoming the thirteenth European nation partaking in the competition.

New Zealand had won the Oceania Confederation Cup, but that accomplishment alone does not secure a position in the World Cup. They had to face Costa Rice as they finished fourth place in the Confederation of North, Central America, and Caribbean Associations of Football (CONCACAF). The top three nations in CONCACAF, which were Mexico, the United States, and Canada went on to the World Cup. In the Intercontinental Playoff 1, Costa Rica won over New Zealand 1 – 0 as the fourth team to enter the World Cup from the CONCACAF qualifiers.

Similarly, Peru came in fifth place for the CONCACAF qualifiers, enabling them to advance onto the Intercontinental Playoff 2. Their opponent was the third-place finisher in the Asian Football Confederation (AFC), which was Australia. After defeating the United Arab Emirates in the third-place match with a score of 2 – 1, Australia defeated Peru 5 – 4 through a penalty shootout in order to gain their place in the World Cup.

Among the world nations to qualify for the competition are Argentina and Portugal, home to superstars Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, respectively. “The rivalry between Messi and Ronaldo has been ongoing since I was an infant. For fifteen years have the two shared the stage together as the most distinguishably talented players of our generation,” said Kadas Tsoi ’23.

Tsoi’s judgment seems to ring true, as the two have shared the pitch for nearly their entire careers. Since the media coins them as “rivals,” genuine fans of the sport are often polarized in their appreciation of one while neglecting the other. 

Qatar 2022 is most likely Messi and Ronaldo’s final World Cup as the two approach the age of forty. Most footballers retire at this age due to the aging of their tendons, reduction in their intact reflexes, and inability to maintain the same stamina as younger players. Regardless, several fans cheer for the victory of these two legends as the World Cup trophy would be a perfect conclusion to their vastly decorated trophy cases. 

However, Messi and Ronaldo’s teams are not the favorites. Whilst the returning champions, France, are highly regarded, football enthusiasts and analysts speculate that Brazil as well as England are particularly well-equipped to perform substantially.

Additionally, the United States is in Group B of Qatar 2022. Even though they missed their chance in Russia 2018, the American team was able to return and distinctively secure their position in Qatar 2022 by defeating Mexico 3 – 2 in the CONCACAF qualifying Nations League Grand Final. “I was a bit disappointed that the United States failed to qualify in Russia 2018, but thankfully they did this time around,” said Goss.

As the final tournament with thirty-two teams, Qatar 2022 will begin with the group stage. Each nation will play one match against all of their group opponents in hopes of accumulating enough points to advance. In other words, the four teams in a group will play a total of six unique matches, with teams awarded three points for a win, one point to each for a draw, and no points for a loss. From the results of these matches, the four teams within each group will be ranked in the standings to determine their fate (disputes in points are resolved through the number of goals scored in the culmination of each team’s three matches). The bottom two teams of each group will be eliminated from the competition, while the top two advance.

The “top-rankers” of each group will move into the knockout stage where sixteen teams remain. From this point forward, every match is an elimination round and winners must be decided through extra time or a penalty shootout if goals remain tied. 

The conclusion of the round of sixteen will determine the quarter-finalists, leading to the semi-finals, the penultimate match for third-place, and eventually the Grand Final of the World Cup. 

As November 2022 approaches, you know what to expect. Consider making plans to turn on your television in order to immerse yourself in the two-month-long festival of football!

“The World Cup only happens every four years, so you should definitely take advantage of the opportunity to watch it,” said Lucy Paolini ’23.