Where will England’s World Cup matches be played? Qatar stadiums explained ahead of winter tournament

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England will face Iran in their first 2022 World Cup match on November 21.

We are exactly a month away from England kicking off their World Cup campaign in Qatar as they face Iran in their group stage opener. The tournament will be Gareth Southgate’s third in charge as he looks to build on semi-final and final spots in the 2018 World Cup and the 2020 Euros.

The Three Lions were well at home in last year’s Euros as England played host to a majority of matches, including the final at Wembley Stadium. However, this winter will see them jet off to Qatar - in very unfamiliar territory as they look to acclimatise to the hot weather and different culture.

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Since the Middle Eastern country were announced as hosts to this year’s World Cup back in 2010, Qatar have spent years building brand new stadiums and preparing for the tournament. This World Cup will feature some brilliant venues that have some of the highest capacities in the world. So where are England playing their games this winter?

Where are England games being played?

England vs Iran - Khalifa International Stadium

The Khalifa International Stadium, also known as National Stadium, was built in Doha in 1976 and has been converted for the 2022 World Cup. It has previously hosted five games at the 2019 FIFA Club World Cup, the 2006 Asian Games and the 2019 World Championships in Athletics.

The venue has a capacity of 40,000 seats and will feature five group matches, one round of 1 and the match for third place. England will also play at Khalifa International Stadium if they finish second in Group B. That match would take place on December 3 against the winners of Group A.

England vs USA - Al Bayt Stadium

Al Bayt Stadium in Al Khor opened in 2021 specifically for the World Cup. The stadium opened in November 2021 and hosted the 2021 Arab Cup. The ground has a capacity of around 60,000 seats, with the top tier set to be removed after the tournament to reduce the capacity to 32,000. England would return to Al Bayt Stadium if they are to win their group for the round of 16, as well as a potential quarter-final tie.

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Wales vs England - Ahmed bin Ali Stadium

Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium in Al Rayyan opened in 2020 and was built in place of the old home of Al Rayyan SC. It is set to hold around 40,000 fans for the World Cup, before it is reduced by almost half following the tournament’s conclusion.

Knock-out stage

Most of England’s potential knockout matches would be played at the same venues they visited for their group stage fixtures - either Al Bayt Stadium or Khalifa International Stadium. However, if they are to finish top of Group B and also progress through to the quarter-finals, they could play at Lusail Iconic Stadium. It could also host England’s semi-final clash if they were to finish as runners-up in Group B. This venue is the biggest out of all the World Cup stadiums, with a capacity of 80,000 seats.

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