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FIFA World Cup 2022 will start Nov. 21 in Qatar

FILE - In this Thursday Dec. 2, 2010

FILE - In this Thursday Dec. 2, 2010 file photo, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani, Emir of Qatar, holds the World Cup trophy after the announcement of Qatar hosting the 2022 soccer World Cup in Zurich, Switzerland. FIFA has been plunged into crisis since seven officials were arrested in dawn raids last week at a luxury Zurich hotel and in a separate probe, Swiss authorities are investigating the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bidding contests, which went to Russia and Qatar. (AP Photo/Anja Niedringhaus, File) Photo Credit: AP

ZURICH -- FIFA says the 2022 World Cup in Qatar will start on Nov. 21, kicking off a 28-day tournament that will finish on Dec. 18.

FIFA's executive committee confirmed the 2022 dates on Friday, six months after picking the Sunday, Dec. 18 date -- Qatar's national holiday -- for the final.

In March, FIFA finally decided to switch the 2022 tournament from June-July to avoid Qatar's summer heat.

A 28-day World Cup is four fewer than usual and is designed to cause less disruption to clubs and leagues which must shut down for several peak midseason weeks.

FIFA had delayed choosing a kickoff date in Qatar while it held talks on the 2019-2024 schedule of national team fixtures.

The international calendar mandates when clubs must release players for national-team duty.

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