2022 FIFA World Cup hosts Qatar reveal design for 80,000-seat Lusail Stadium

Lusail: Qatar on Saturday revealed the design for the stadium that will in four years' time host the first ever World Cup finals game to be played in the Middle East.

The 80,000-seat Lusail Stadium — also the venue for the 2022 World Cup final — was revealed in an elaborate ceremony attended by the country's ruler Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani and other dignitaries, including the United Nations' secretary-general, Antonio Guterres.

 2022 FIFA World Cup hosts Qatar reveal design for 80,000-seat Lusail Stadium

A computer-generated image of the 80,000-seat Lusail Stadium. Qatar’s Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy/AFP

Hassan al-Thawadi, the head of the country's World Cup organising body, the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy, called the unveiling a "significant milestone".

"Every milestone for us is always important," he said.

"The announcement of the design of the stadium is very, very important... it's the last stadium as well."

The Lusail Stadium is the eighth and final venue to be revealed for the Qatar World Cup.

Designed by British architects Foster and Partners, the stadium is said to take its inspiration from Arab craftsmanship, said the committee.

It also stands close to the site of the former home of Qatar's founder, Sheikh Jassim bin Mohammed bin Thani al-Thani.

The stadium sits in the completely new city of Lusail, a $45 billion project located 15 kilometres north of the capital Doha.

It is one of the largest infrastructure schemes undertaken by Qatar, which is an undergoing enormous transformation for the World Cup.

Construction work, in the shape of a Qatari/Chinese joint project, is set to finish in 2020.

The unveiling of Lusail comes as world football's governing body FIFA is still considering whether to expand the tournament from 32 teams to 48.

If that expansion occurs — there is currently a feasibility study underway — it is likely that tournament games will be shared among other countries in the region.

"Ultimately the decision (on expansion) will be made with FIFA and Qatar," said Thawadi.

Updated Date: Dec 16, 2018 13:48:07 IST