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World Cup schedule a reminder and motivation for us to get ready, says Qatar coach Felix Sanchez

Doha, Qatar: Felix Sanchez, the coach of Asian champions Qatar, said on Thursday that playing the first match of the 2022 FIFA World Cup would be ‘a great motivation’ for Al Annabi.

Al Bayt Stadium, a 60,000-capacity arena that takes its name and shape from the traditional tents used by nomadic peoples in the Gulf region, will be the stage for hosts Qatar to kick off the tournament on November 21, 2022.

The local kick-off times for group matches have been set for 1pm, 4 pm, 7 pm, and 10pm, with the simultaneous kick-offs for the last round of group games and knockout-stage timings being scheduled for 6pm and 10pm. 

Khalifa International Stadium will be the setting for the play-off for third place on December 17 while the final will kick off at Lusail Stadium in front of an 80,000 crowd on December 18.

The Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SC) on Wednesday announced that Al Bayt Stadium will host the first match of the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

“Of course to see the date of the match and schedule is a reminder of how near the competition. It is another motivation for us to be ready and to give a memorable performance,” Sanchez said in reaction to the match schedule being announced.

“It’s nice to see when we start and where,” Sanchez added.

Talal Al Kaabi, Executive Director of the National Football Teams, on Thursday said the opening of the 2022 FIFA World Cup at Al Bayt Stadium, one of the most important football facilities in the country, will be a milestone for Qatari football.

He said with Qatar set to play the traditional opening game as the hosts of the 2022 FIFA World Cup, the opening match at the new venue will give an added value to the atmosphere.

The World Cup, the first edition to be held in the Arab world, will make the occasion a historic one for the entire region, Al Kaabi said in his remarks.

He added that the first match for the Qatari squad in 2022 would be a culmination of a long journey that will also take a step into another chapter of memorable matches.

He said watching Qatar play in front of home matches would certainly inspire a future generation of players.

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