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13th Jul 2018

2022 World Cup final will take place the week before Christmas

This is going to be very, very strange

Darragh Murphy

What are we going to do after Sunday other than count down to the next World Cup?

The 2018 World Cup has provided us with a month of incredible entertainment and, coupled with the ongoing heat wave, it’s been a very enjoyable summer for football fans.

The 2022 World Cup is going to be very, very different though.

Fifa president Gianni Infantino has confirmed the dates for the next World Cup, which will take place in Qatar, and it’s going to come very close to Christmas.

Infantino has revealed that the first game of the 2022 tournament will kick off on November 21 and the final is scheduled for December 18.

“The domestic championships have already been informed of this decision, which is a good decision because we can not play football in June and July in Qatar,” Infantino said at the traditional tournament overview media conference.

The number of teams which will be competing at the next World Cup has yet to be decided but Infantino is hoping to push through his desire to have 48 teams in the competition, rather than the 32 which took part in the 2018 World Cup.

“We will decide whether it’s 48 or 32 teams in the next few months,” Infantino added. “We must have have discussions with the Qataris and then if there is a possibility with the Fifa Council and stakeholders. Then we will decide calmly and quietly what the decision is.

“For now it’s a World Cup with 32 teams but everybody is open-minded and we will have a frank and open debate.”