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Venues identified by FIFA for possible use in 48-team ’22 WC

By ROB HARRISMarch 11, 2019

LONDON (AP) — A look at the stadiums in five countries in the Persian Gulf that FIFA identifies as possible venues if the 2022 World Cup is expanded to 48 teams and additional venues outside Qatar are required. Capacities are according to FIFA.

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BAHRAIN

Bahrain National Stadium, Riffa, 30,000

KUWAIT

Jaber Al-Ahmad International Stadium, Kuwait City, 60,000

Sabah Al-Salem Stadium, Kuwait City, 26,000

OMAN

Boshar-Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex, Muscat, 34,000

SAUDI ARABIA

King Fahd International Stadium, Riyadh, 68,000

King Abdullah Sports City Stadium, Jeddah, 62,000

Prince Mohammed bin Fahad bin Abdul Aziz, Dammam, 26,000

UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

Zayed Sports City Stadium, Abu Dhabi, 43,000

Mohammad bin Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi, 42,000

Hazza bin Zayed Stadium, Al Ain, 23,000

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The stadiums are featured in a copy of a feasibility study into adding 16 teams obtained by The Associated Press ahead of it being discussed at a meeting of the FIFA Council on Friday.

Qatar is already planning to use eight stadiums, and the FIFA report says an additional two to four venues would be required in at least one country in a 48-team World Cup in 2022.

Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and the UAE severed economic, diplomatic and travel ties with Qatar in 2017, preventing flights between the countries.

“It is important to stress that this list is based on a preliminary search only and is non-exhaustive,” the FIFA feasibility study states. “Moreover, the potential suitability of these and other stadiums could only be conclusively determined following a comprehensive inspection process, in which such stadiums were closely scrutinized against FIFA’s requirements for FIFA World Cup stadiums as well as assessed for their availability, construction plans, etc.

“In this respect, it is worth noting that any construction works which would be required would need to be completed prior to the tournament. For reference, FIFA generally requires that stadiums be completed 12 months prior to the tournament in order to ensure venue readiness and testing.”

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