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World Cup 2022 news and highlights on Opening Day

Ben Church/CNN
Ben Church/CNN

The first match at this year’s World Cup is being played at the newly-built Al Bayt Stadium.

The 60,000-capacity venue is stunning – an architectural triumph that takes its name and design from the traditional tents historically used in the country.

But the stadium sits 40 kilometers (about 25 miles) north of Doha, and getting there requires leaving the bright lights behind and entering the desert terrain.

There is no metro station nearby, so fans, media and officials are all getting here by road. That, of course, has led to heavy congestion on the one road leading to the stadium, but fans don’t seem to care. 

Ben Church/CNN
Ben Church/CNN

Qatari and Ecuadorian supporters gather in groups to sing songs and pose for pictures before entering the stadium and taking their seats. 

There also seems to be a large contingent of Mexican, Argentinian and even German fans who are joining in the celebrations. 

Once fans get to their seats, they are treated to light shows and pumping music, as the atmosphere builds ahead of a World Cup like no other. 

Ben Church/CNN
Ben Church/CNN

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