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Qatar World Cup to feature 40,000-seater stadium designed like skullcap

ESPN FC's Stuart Holden and Shaka Hislop discuss the latest decision made by FIFA that will see the first winter World Cup final set for Dec. 18 in Qatar.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said it makes sense to hold the 2022 Qatar World Cup in the winter months, but admitted it will have an impact on European league schedules.

Qatar World Cup organisers have presented plans for the 40,000-seat Al Thumama Stadium that will be used in 2022.

The design by Qatari architect Ibrahim M. Jaidah is based on the "gahfiya" skullcap worn under the gutra, or male headscarf, in the Gulf.

It is one of the seven stadiums currently being built for the tournament in the Gulf nation in five years.

Al Thumama Stadium, in the Doha suburb of Al Thumama, is due to be finished in 2020 and will be used for matches up to the quarterfinals in 2022.

"This...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Russia tries to dispel England fans' fears ahead of 2018 World Cup

Meet AlanTim the robot, who will offer protection to British football fans during the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.

The Russian National Tourist Office in London is providing information to England fans to help "dispel their doubts about security matters" ahead of the 2018 World Cup.

Despite the success of this summer's Confederations Cup in Russia, violence around England's meeting with Russia at Euro 2016 in France raised lingering concerns about personal safety for the upcoming World Cup.

A BBC "Panorama" investigation broadcast in February, entitled "Russia's Hooligan Army," suggested there are plans...

 By Tom Marshall

2026 World Cup bid to consider 49 stadiums across U.S., Mexico, Canada

U.S. soccer president Sunil Gulati is confident that North America's infrastructure will support their World Cup joint bid.
ESPN's Sam Borden chats with U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati about the U.S.-led 2026 World Cup bid.

Thirty-four cities in the United States, seven cities in Canada and three in Mexico are on the list of proposed locations to host games at the 2026 World Cup, the United Bid Committee announced on Tuesday.

The organizers will reach out to each of the cities on the list and those hoping to be selected will have until Sept. 5 to declare their interest.

Those cities will then have until early January 2018 to prepare their bid to become a World Cup host, if they make the initial shortlist, which is set...

Morocco's history of failure in World Cup bidding likely to continue

Morocco's decision to bid for the 2026 World Cup will see the North African country hoping to make it fifth time lucky after some near misses in the past.

Morocco have thrown their hat in the ring against a powerful joint-bid from the United States, Canada and Mexico, and look immediately on the back foot for what will be an expanded 48-team tournament that will stretch their infrastructure to the maximum.

Morocco are the only other nation to bid against the Central and North American trio, and...