Soccer’s governing body says the final of the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar will be played on Dec. 18, the Arab country’s national day.
FIFA’s executive committee also agreed that the 2022 World Cup, whose venue and schedule has been the focus of controversy, will be played over “a reduced timeframe, for instance 28 days.”
As we reported last month, a FIFA task force recommended that the 2022 World Cup be played in November and December, a period that coincides with Europe’s club season.
The World Cup is typically played over summer, but summer temperatures in Qatar can exceed 110 degrees.
The BBC adds: “The decision to hold the final on 18 December means Britain’s traditional Boxing Day club matches on 26 December can still take place.”
Qatar was a controversial choice to host the 2022 World Cup; critics alleged corruption had a role in its winning bid. The country has also been criticized for the working conditions of laborers who are building stadiums for the tournament.
Meanwhile, FIFA also announced that France will host the Women’s World Cup in 2019. FIFA members voted unanimously for France over South Korea.
England, New Zealand and South Africa had been contenders until last October, when the field of potential hosts was narrowed to two.
The Women’s World Cup, which was first held in 1991, is played every four years. Canada hosts the next edition in June and July.