Handy World Cup guide with schedule, teams, kick-off and time differences

The first whistle has now sounded for the 2022 World Cup (Image: Shutterstock / Nomi2626)

That The FIFA World Cup 2022 has officially started, with hosts Qatar losing to Ecuador in the tournament’s opening match.

There are many differences in this year’s competition, but much is also the same despite the World Cup being held in Qatar in the winter rather than the sweltering summer.

England will be looking to win their first major title since 1966 but Gareth Southgate’s men will face tough opposition from France, Germany, Spain, Brazil and Argentina.

Here’s everything you need to know about the Qatar 2022 World Cup including dates, times, schedule, teams, venues and how to watch it on TV.

When did the FIFA World Cup 2022 start? dates and schedule

The World Championship started today (Sunday 20th November) and will end on Sunday 18th December 2022.

World Cup schedule

  • group stage: November 20 – December 2
  • Round of 16: 3rd-6th December
  • Quarter finals: December 9th and 10th
  • Semifinals: 13-14 December
  • Final: December 18th

World Cup TV coverage in the UK

As usual, the BBC and ITV will share World Cup coverage.

Every match will be televised live and fans can also follow the action on BBC iPlayer and the ITV Hub.

For fans in Wales, S4C will show Welsh language coverage of every match in Wales during the tournament. Matches will be broadcast across the UK on S4C and online on S4C Clic player and BBC iPlayer.

What is the time difference?

Qatar are three hours ahead of Great Britain in November and December, with games at 10am, 1pm, 4pm and 7pm UK time in the group stages and 3pm in the knockout stages and will kick off at 7:00 p.m.

Venue of the World Cup 2022 in Qatar

The World Cup promises to be a breathtaking spectacle under the lights (Image: David Ramos/Getty Images)

Which teams qualified?

That 32 teams that compete at the World Cup have long been determined, as have the eight groups.

However, a number of teams will be without key players, with some of the game’s biggest stars already ruled out of the World Cup through injury.

World Cup group stage

Group A

  • Qatar
  • Ecuador
  • Senegal
  • Netherlands

Group B

Group C

  • Argentina
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Mexico
  • Poland

Group D

  • France
  • Australia
  • Denmark
  • Tunisia

Group E

  • Spain
  • Costa Rica
  • Germany
  • Japan

Group F

  • Belgium
  • Canada
  • Morocco
  • Croatia

Group G

  • Brazil
  • Serbia
  • Switzerland
  • Cameroon

Group H

  • Portugal
  • Ghana
  • Uruguay
  • South Korea

What will happen to the Premier League during the World Cup?

The Premier League suspended for six weeks on November 13 before the first game this Sunday.

This is just one of several impacts the Qatar tournament had on the Premier League.

The Premier League will return to action on Boxing Day just eight days after the final.

The season started earlier (August 6, 2022) and will end slightly later (May 28, 2023) than normal.

The England national football team poses for a photo ahead of the Nations League game against Germany

England will try to impress in Qatar (Image: Sebastian Frej/MB Media/Getty Images)

Why does the World Cup take place in winter?

The tournament takes place in winter to avoid the extremely high temperatures in Qatar during the summer months.

Temperatures in June and July – when the World Cup is usually held – average around 37ºC, which is considered too hot for the players.

What will the temperature be in Qatar during the World Cup?

The temperature in November and December in Qatar is probably perfectly fine to play football, unlike June and July.

WeatherAndClimate.com reports that the November maximum temperature in Doha is 30°C with a minimum of 20°C, falling to a maximum of 25°C and a minimum of 16°C in December.

The stadiums will be equipped with sophisticated air conditioning systems to keep the temperature down at pitch level.

When was the England squad announced?

Southgate named the final 26-man England squad for the tournament on November 10.

Alongside the usual line-up, Southgate found a place in the squad for Leicester midfielder James Maddison, Newcastle striker Callum Wilson and Chelsea midfielder Conor Gallagher.

Southgate can replace injured players in the squad up to 24 hours before the first England game.

When are England’s games at the World Cup?

England were drawn in Group B along with USA, Iran and Wales.

England World Cup Games

  • England v Iran: Monday, November 21 at 1 p.m
  • England vs USA: Friday 25 November at 7pm
  • Wales vs England: Tuesday, November 29 at 7 p.m

What are the World Cup kits?

England have released their new home and away kits for the competition, with the new designs bearing a striking resemblance to some of their popular retro kits.

Wales have also released their new stylish kits as they prepare for their first World Cup since 1958.

Many of the other nations participating in the World Cup have now released their new home and away kits – and it’s very mixed.

England home shirt for the 2022 World Cup

England will look good in Qatar (Image: The FA/PA wire)

Which stadiums are used?

Eight stadiums will be used in Qatar, with the opening game being played at Al Bayt Stadium in Al Khor and the final being played at Lusail Iconic Stadium in Lusail.

FIFA has confirmed that Semi-automated offside technology is used in stadiums to improve the accuracy and speed of offside decisions.

Lusail Stadium in Qatar

The Lusail Stadium will host the FIFA World Cup final (Image: Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

Stadiums of the 2022 World Cup

Lusail Iconic Stadium, Lusail: Capacity: 80,000

  • 5x group games
  • 1x Round of 16
  • 1x Quarterfinals
  • 1x semi-final
  • final

Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor: Capacity: 60,000

  • 5x group games
  • 1x Round of 16
  • 1x Quarterfinals
  • 1x semi-final

Al-Janoub Stadium, Al Wakrah: Capacity: 40,000

  • 5x group games
  • 1x Round of 16

Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium, Al Rayyan: Capacity: 40,000

  • 5x group games
  • 1x Round of 16

Khalifa International Stadium, Doha: Capacity: 40,000

  • 5x group games
  • 1x Round of 16
  • Third place game

Education City Stadium, Doha: Capacity: 40,000

  • 5x group games
  • 1x Round of 16
  • 1x Quarterfinals

Stadium 974, Doha: Capacity: 40,000

  • 5x group games
  • 1x Round of 16

Al Thumama Stadium, Doha: Capacity: 40,000

  • 5x group games
  • 1x Round of 16
  • 1x Quarterfinals

MORE : World Cup 2022 kit ratings: the best and worst to be issued in Qatar

MORE: Which Manchester United players will play at the 2022 World Cup?

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