The 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar will be the last one with 32 participants. This format was established in 1998 and became a tradition for almost 25 years. However, because of economic reasons and to get more countries involved, the 2026 edition is set to be played with 48 countries at the United States, Mexico and Canada. 

So, this scheduled match format for Qatar 2022 will take place from November 20 to December 18. This 29-day span is one of the shortest ever considering the number of participants (32). At the same time, this will be the first time an Arab country is host of soccer's most important tournament. 

Furthermore, the World Cup has never been played in the months of November and December. This major change was made because of the tremendously high temperatures in Qatar during the summer. Considering this scenario, read here to find out how many games will be played in the greatest sporting event of the year.

How many matches are in the 2022 World Cup group stage?

In Qatar 2022, there will be 48 games during the group stage. Each team will play three matches. Remember, for the last time in World Cup history, 32 participants compete in eight groups of four teams each. In the 2026 World Cup at the US, Canada and Mexico, 48 teams will qualify and the total number of matches could increase up to 80. 

How many matches are in the 2022 World Cup knockout stage?

First of all, it's important to clarify that the knockout stages in the World Cup are the Round of 16, the quarterfinals, the semifinals and the final. In the Round of 16 there will be eight single-elimination matches played between the group winners and the runner-ups. Those games are programmed from December 3 to December 6.

The quarterfinals will be four elimination games set to be played on Friday, December 9 and Saturday, December 10. The venues for those matches will be Lusail Stadium, Education City Stadium, Al Bayt Stadium and Al Thumama Stadium. The semifinals consist of two elimination games which will be played on December 13 (Lusail Stadium) and December 14 (Al Bayt Stadium).

The semifinals' losers will play a single match for the third place on December 17 at Khalifa International Stadium. The final to determine the World Cup champion is scheduled for December 18 at Luisail Stadium. 

How many matches will be played in total at the Qatar 2022 World Cup?

There will be a total of 64 matches during the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar. 48 in the group stage, 8 in the Round of 16, 4 in the quarterfinals, 2 in the semifinals, the match for the third place and the final.