Qatar has officially opened Al Thumama Stadium, the sixth tournament-ready venue that will be used during next year’s FIFA World Cup in the country.

The 40,000-capacity stadium, which is located 7.5 miles south of Doha, hosted the Amir Cup final between Al Rayyan and Al Sadd, with a full crowd in attendance. Al Sadd won the final 5-4 on penalties after the match finished 1-1 after 90 minutes.

An inauguration ceremony took place before the final and involved local school children celebrating the design of the stadium, which was led by Qatari architect Ibrahim M. Jaidah.

The stadium is designed to resemble the ‘gahfiya’ head cap worn by men and boys across the Arab world. It is the first Qatar 2022 venue to be designed by a Qatari architect.

Hassan Al Thawadi, secretary general of Qatar’s Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy, said: “We are incredibly proud to have inaugurated the sixth tournament-ready stadium ahead of next year’s FIFA World Cup.

“Al Thumama is a very special venue for everyone in Qatar. It pays tribute to an important piece of clothing that is proudly worn by men and boys across the Arab world and its unique design showcases the talent and innovation of our people.”

The stadium features cooling technology which will allow the venue to stage events throughout the year. The stadium precinct also includes cycling and running tracks, as well as green spaces for the local community.

Al Thawadi added: “We are now within touching distance of the World Cup. Soon we will pass the one year to go milestone and host the FIFA Arab Cup – which will give us a major opportunity to test all our plans for Qatar 2022. We stand ready and prepared to host a memorable World Cup for the benefit of Qatar, the region and the world.”

Al Thumama Stadium will host matches up to the quarter-final stage during the World Cup. It joins Khalifa International Stadium, Al Janoub Stadium, Education City Stadium, Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium and Al Bayt Stadium as fully operational Qatar 2022 venues. The two remaining under-construction venues are Lusail Stadium and Ras Abu Aboud Stadium.

Al Thumama Stadium will also host matches during the upcoming FIFA Arab Cup, which will serve as a warm-up event for next year’s World Cup.

Image: Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy