Host country Qatar and South American favourite Ecuador will slug it out in the opening match of the FIFA World Cup in Qatar on Sunday.
The opening match and ceremony of the showpiece tournament, the first to be held in the Middle East, will be held at the majestic 60,000-capacity Al Bayt Stadium in Al Khor, north of Qatar’s capital, Doha, Njenje Media News reports.
The fixture has been brought forward by a day to keep with the tradition of the host nation opening the competition.
Once ranked 113th in the world, Qatar’s national team – nicknamed the Maroons – has risen to 50th in the FIFA rankings thanks to a string of successes in recent years, including a surprise first-ever Asian Cup win in 2019.
The team also made a semi-final appearance at last year’s Gold Cup of the Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football as a guest nation.
This will be Qatar’s first appearance at a World Cup.
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