KATHMANDU: The highly-anticipated FIFA World Cup 2022 has started in Qatar.
Qatar opened the World Cup 2022 with the first match being played between Qatar against Ecuador on Sunday.
Qatar, which has never appeared in a World Cup, is facing a major challenge from Group A that which includes Senegal and the Netherlands.
32 teams will be eyeing glory in this once-in-every-four-years football extravaganza.
The teams are hosts Qatar, Ecuador, Senegal, the Netherlands, England, Iran, USA, Wales, Argentina, Saudi Arabia, Mexico, Poland, France, Australia, Denmark, Tunisia, Spain, Costa Rica, Germany, Japan, Belgium, Canada, Morocco, and Croatia, Brazil, Serbia, Switzerland, Cameroon, Portugal, Ghana, Uruguay, and South Korea.
France is the defending champion, having won their second title in 2018 after defeating Croatia in the final.
They will be aiming to defend their crown against a world-class competition offered by these aforementioned teams.
It will be the final World Cup tournament for Lionel Messi, the Argentina striker considered one of the greatest ever footballers of all time.
It is also highly likely that 37-year-old Cristiano Ronaldo will don the Portuguese colours for one final time.
This marks the first time the Middle East is hosting the event.
It is also the first time the World Cup is being held outside the typical June-July window, in order to avoid the desert heat during the summers in Qatar.
Eight stadiums across Qatar will be hosting the 64 matches of this tournament.
Qatar and Ecuador will lock horns in the campaign opener from 9:45 pm Nepal time onwards.
Matches throughout the tournament will take place at 12:45 AM, 3:45 PM, 6:45 PM, 9:45 pm Nepal time.
The Round of 16 from December 3 onwards will mark the beginning of the knockout stage of the tournament.
The quarterfinals will start from December 9 onwards, followed by the semifinals from December 14 onwards.