All you need to know about the World Cup Opening Game: Qatar vs Ecuador

The 22nd edition of the World Cup will kick off in Qatar on the 20th of November. To kick off this event awaited by millions of people around the world, the Qatari host country will have the honour of opening its competition against Ecuador.

World Cup Opening Game

An opening fixture with the host country

The game featuring Qatar and Ecuador will open the next World Cup in November. It is traditional for the host country, in this case Qatar, to open the competition. This will be the case again this year, as has been the custom since the 2006 World Cup. Before that, it was the defending champions who had the honour of playing the opening game.

2022 World Cup opening game: Qatar – Ecuador on 20th November at 8pm

The first game of this special World Cup, held for the first time in winter, will see Qatar take on Ecuador. The host nation, which will be participating in its first World Cup, will be looking to beat the odds. The match will take place on Sunday 20 November at 8pm.

Venue of the opening game: Al-Thumama Stadium

Among the World Cup stadiums, the venue that will host the opening ceremony and hence the first game is the Al-Thumama Stadium, located in Doha, capital of Qatar. The brand new 40,000-capacity stadium, inaugurated in 2021, has already hosted some of last year’s FIFA Arab Cup games, including the semi-final between Tunisia and Algeria, which the Fennecs won in extra time.

List of players for the 2022 World Cup opening game

With just a few months to go before the start of the 2022 World Cup, we can already start to imagine which players from the two nations will be taking part in the competition at the end of the year. Here are the latest lists of the two countries to give you an idea of who will be in the tournament.



The history of World Cup opening games

Find the list of all the fixtures that have opened all World Cups. Up to and including 2002, it was the defending champions who opened the competition. Since 2006, the tradition has been for the host country to open “their” competition.

Table of opening fixtures of the World Cup since its creation in 1930:

YearOpening Game
1930France 4-1 Mexico and USA 3-0 Belgium
1934All the Round of 16 simultaneously
1938Germany 1-1 Switzerland
1950Brazil 4-0 Mexico
1954Brazil 5-0 Mexico and Yugoslavia 1-0 France
1958West Germany 3-1 Argentina and Northern Ireland 1-0 Czechoslovakia
1962Uruguay 2-1 Colombia and Chile 3-1 Switzerland
1966England 0-0 Uruguay
1970Mexico 0-0 USSR
1974Brazil 0-0 Yugoslavia
1978West Germany 0-0 Poland
1982Argentina 0-1 Belgium
1986Italy 1-1 Bulgaria
1990Argentina 0-1 Cameroon
1994Germany 1-0 Bolivia
1998Brazil 2-1 Scotland
2002France 0-1 Senegal
2006Germany 4-2 Costa Rica
2010South Africa 1-1 Mexico
2014Brazil 3-1 Croatia
2018Russia 5-0 Saudi Arabia