According to a proposed schedule, the opening ceremony and the Qatar vs. Ecuador game might occur on November 20.
The FIFA Bureau must still accept the move to move up the start date of the World Cup.
The 2022 World Cup will be the first held in November and December in the tournament’s 92-year existence. Late May and the end of July have been the dates for the previous 21 editions of this competition.
For Qatar to play first, FIFA plans to move the World Cup’s start date ahead a week.
Senegal was originally scheduled to face the Netherlands on Monday, November 21, 2022, as the first game of the 2022 edition.
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Hosts Qatar may be able to play in the traditional curtain-raiser match at FIFA’s 2022 World Cup if the tournament is brought forward one day.
While this is true, the Qatari hosts aim to be a part of the opening game of the 2022 edition. On Sunday, November 20, they could face Ecuador in their first match.
FIFA is set to change the start date of the World Cup so that the host nation Qatar can kick off the tournament.
After one of the most turbulent qualifying processes in history, the Qatar 2022 World Cup calendar adjustments are continuing. However, this time, the difference would be in the first match, which would mean that the start date of this famous event would also be impacted.
There are reports that FIFA is considering shifting the World Cup’s first match from its current date of Monday, November 21, and moving the game between Qatar and Ecuador from that day to Sunday, November 20, according to Argentina’s Diario Olé newspaper.
The governing body has agreed to move the event up a day in response to requests from the hosts, allowing Felix Sanchez’s men to play in the opening match on Sunday, November 20.
Instead of the originally scheduled date of November 21, their game against Ecuador will begin at 7 p.m. (4 p.m. GMT) on November 20 at the Al Bayt Stadium.
However, the decision to change the World Cup’s start date will not affect England’s tournament-opening match.
This is due to the tradition started by Germany in 2006, in which the host team played a couple of games before the inauguration, which has caused some confusion.
New York Times reports that in a letter to the bureau’s members, Secretary of State John Kerry wrote:
Regarding opening ceremonies at the start of FIFA World Cups, ‘it has been a historical tradition,’ FIFA claimed. ‘A component deemed to have substantial importance from a ceremonial, cultural, and commercial point of view,’ the organization added.
‘The FIFA administration has assessed the commercial and legal implications of the proposal—including the impact on contractual commitments across media rights, sponsorship, and ticketing and hospitality—as well as the impact on traveling fans, and has determined that any risk is sufficiently outweighed by the value and benefits of the proposals.’
Qatar initially declined to take part in the inaugural game, which was scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. local time on Monday, November 21, but they have since changed their minds.