The 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar is so close and the countdown is in full swing ahead of the first ever World Cup tournament to be held in the Middle East.
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32 countries have qualified and all eyes will be on them for 29 days from mid-November to mid-December as Qatar hosts a truly unique tournament.
For the past 12 years, Qatar has planned to host the world, and this tournament will be unlike any other.
Below are answers to some of the key questions ahead of the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
Why the World Cup this November?
After the World Cup was awarded to Qatar in 2010, it was quickly decided that it would be too hot to host the tournament during the normal summer months of June and July. Thus, the first ever winter world championship will take place. National leagues around the world, and especially in Europe, have had to postpone their seasons in order to host this winter World Cup. Most of them will restart in late December and early January.
What are the laws in Qatar for the World Cup?
Drinking laws in Qatar have been relaxed for the tournament as fans will have designated areas where they can drink inside and outside the stadiums. There are also special fan zones and sobering-up stations where fans can sober up. In a recent interview with our UK partners on Sky Sports, Qatar World Cup bid leader Nasser Al Khater said everyone is welcome in Qatar, including people from the LGBTQ+ community. He also said that LGBTQ+ fans can bring rainbow flags and show their affection. Qatar has not changed anti-LGBTQ+ laws due to concerns from visiting fans, but Al Khater told Sky that “no one will be discriminated against during the 29-day tournament and that gay fans can hold hands.”
What are the dates for the 2022 World Cup?
The World Championship starts on November 20, 2022, and the final on December 18, 2022.
What time do World Cup games start?
Group stage start times: 5:00 AM, 8:00 AM, 11:00 AM, 2:00 PM ET
Where and how can I watch World Cup games live in the USA?
In the US, you can watch it on TV in English on Fox and on TV channels en Español: Telemundo, Universo, peacock.
How do World Cup groups work?
Each of the eight World Cup groups has four teams. The top two teams in each group advance to the bottom 16 for the playoffs. The bottom two teams in each group are eliminated. If you win a game in an elimination round, you will advance to the next round, and if you lose, you are eliminated.
If teams are tied on the World Cup Group Stage standings, the following criteria are used to determine which team will finish in the last 16:
1) goal difference in all matches
2) number of goals scored in all group matches
3) points obtained in matches between the teams in question
4) goal difference in matches played between the teams in question
5) the number of goals scored in matches played between the teams in question
6) Fair play points in all group matches
How many players can you bring to the World Cup? What is the size of the roster?
Each team can choose a roster of 26 for their squad for the World Cup. This is more than the usual 23-man line-up due to additional World Cup requirements in the middle of the club season.
What is the name of the 2022 World Cup mascot?
Qatar’s 2022 mascot is called Laib. The name is an Arabic term for “over-skilled player” and Qatar says the mascot will be known for its “youthful spirit” and “spreading joy and confidence” wherever it travels.
How many tickets were sold for the 2022 World Cup? And which countries bought the most tickets?
95 percent of tickets for the World Cup have been sold. This amounts to almost three million tickets. The top ten countries where tickets were purchased are: Qatar, USA, Saudi Arabia, England, Mexico, United Arab Emirates, Argentina, France, Brazil and Germany.
What is the record viewing statistic for the World Cup?
The highest average tournament attendance remains in the US in 1994, with an average of 68,991 fans watching each game.
How many people will watch the World Cup?
It is predicted that 5 billion people around the world will watch the action of the World Cup. This will exceed the 3.5 billion people who watched the 2018 tournament in Russia.
Which World Cup has the most goals scored?
Both the 1998 and 2014 tournaments had the most goals scored, with 171 goals each. The World Cup with the most goals per game is 1954 with an average of 5.38 goals scored per game.
Which World Cup has the fewest goals scored?
Both in the tournaments of 1930 and in 1934, the fewest goals were scored – 70 in each. However, this is understandable as only 13 teams entered the 1930 tournament and 16 teams in 1934 compared to 32 teams today. The World Cup with the lowest goals per game ratio is 1990 which was 2.21 per game.
Our All Wonders Series will run throughout the 2022-23 Premier League season and will focus on the key stories behind the history, tradition and culture of all 20 Premier League clubs.
[ MORE: Check out our ‘Ever Wonder’ series in full ]
Have you ever sat and wondered why certain chants became iconic in the club? Why does the team have a certain nickname? Why are they playing in these colors? How were they founded? Yep, us too.
[ MORE: How to watch Premier League in USA ]
This season, we’ll dig deeper to tell stories about the rich history, tradition and culture of the Premier League and give you the answers you need to know more.
Have you ever wondered why West Ham fans sing “I’m Blowing Bubbles Forever”?
Have you ever wondered why West Ham fans sing loudly and proudly about blowing soap bubbles? The reason why they sing it will blow your mind and bubbles of course, but mostly your mind…
When the bubble machine starts up and the fans blow the famous West Ham chant before the game, at the start of the second half and after a big win, it’s something special and quirky.
The song was originally written around 1919 in the US by Jaan Kenbrovin and John William Kellett. It was a hit on both sides of the Atlantic and was very popular in music halls in the 1920s.
According to club records, West Ham fans began singing the song at games in the mid-1920s.
But why? Yes, it’s a curious question that has a wild answer.
How did he get involved with West Ham?
School football was very popular in east London, especially around West Ham’s home in Upton Park.
Mr. Cornelius Beale was the Principal of the Park School, which was near Upton Park and was very successful. A football fanatic, Beal was close friends with West Ham United manager and later manager Charlie Painter.
The headmaster nicknamed “Roots” wrote his own version of “Bubbles” and the fans watching Park School sang the song and added the name of the player who did well to it.
Legacy of William “Bubbles” Murray
One of the players who excelled at Park School was William “Bubbles” Murray. It was nicknamed “Bubbles” because it looked very similar to the painting used in the Pears soap commercial. Seriously.
Bubbles never played for the West Ham first team, but many of his teammates, such as West Ham legends Jim Barrett and Syd Puddefoot, did.
However, the Bubbles were inextricably linked to the group of young stars who made it to West Ham, but he played a key role in the clubs’ identity over 100 years later.
Soap ad lookalike leads to iconic hero and song
So you have it.
West Ham’s famous anthem “I’m Always Blowing Bubbles” became popular and synonymous with the club due to a star school player in east London in the 1920s who never…