Qtar inaugurated two FIFA World Cup 2022 stadiums, Al Bayt and 974, on the opening day of the FIFA Arab Cup 2021.
Al Bayt, a 60,000-seater venue designed to resemble the tents historically used by nomadic people in the Gulf region, hosted Qatar’s 1-0 victory against Bahrain. The stadium will also host the opening match of Qatar 2022 in just under a year.
The inauguration of Al Bayt was attended by the Amir of Qatar, His Highness Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani, who officially announced the start of the tournament.
Straight after Al Bayt’s inauguration, Stadium 974 also hosted its first game. The 40,000-capacity venue, made primarily from shipping containers, staged the United Arab Emirates’ 2-1 victory against Syria. Stadium 974 is the first fully demountable stadium in FIFA World Cup™ history and was named after the number of shipping containers used in its development and Qatar’s international dialing code.
Speaking on this important milestone, H.E. Hassan Al Thawadi, Secretary General of the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy (SC), said: “The FIFA Arab Cup is off to a flying start with four exciting matches and the inauguration of two stadiums that will be used during next year’s FIFA World Cup. We are incredibly proud of both venues. Al Bayt pays tribute to Qatari and Arab culture, while Stadium 974 is a beacon of innovation and sustainability. We are sure fans from all over the world will enjoy visiting these state-of-the-art venues during both the Arab Cup and next year’s World Cup.”
On his part, FIFA President, Gianni Infantino, said: “Al Bayt is the house where everyone is uniting, where everyone is coming together. It is a symbol for what the World Cup represents. The Arab Cup represents today what the World Cup will represent next year of people coming together, of people being united from all over the world. So, to have games in such a beautiful stadium, in such a symbolic stadium, is something that we have to cherish and that will be crucial for the success of the World Cup.”