FIFA World Cup 2018 Fixtures

The 21st edition of the FIFA 2018 World Cup is slated to take place between 14 June – 15 July in Russia. It will include 32 teams which qualified in the 5 confederations. The games will be hosted in 12 venues across 11 host cities.

Germany are the defending champions having won the 2014 tournament. 20 teams which played in the 2014 tournament managed to qualify for the event, with 12 teams having not taken part in the last tournament.

This year's event will see Panama and Iceland making their first-ever appearances at a FIFA World Cup.

World Cup Groups Stage Fixtures – All You Need to know

The draw for the Group Stages was held on 1st December 2017. The 32 teams were drawn in 8 groups, with each group having 4 teams. The criteria for the draw was based on the FIFA ranking system. Russia, as the host nations were automatically seeded in pot 1 and in Group A.

All the teams in pot 1 consisted of the 7 highest placed teams in the world, while pot 2 held the next batch of the best 8 teams and so on for the other 2 pots. Teams from the same confederation could not be drawn together except for the UEFA confederation where each group could only contain a maximum of 2 teams. Each of the 2 top teams in each group will qualify for the round of 16.

Russia, which has been placed in Group A will host the first match against Saudi Arabia in Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow on 14 June. Russia has also been drawn with Egypt and Uruguay.

Although there is no “Group of Death,” Group G which features Belgium, England, Tunisia and Panama will be interesting. Group B which features Spain, Portugal, Morocco and Iran should also be interesting.

World Cup Last Sixteen Fixtures – All You Need to know

The last sixteen fixtures will be on a knock-out format. The group winners of their respective groups will be drawn with the runners-up from a different group. The first round will take place on June 30 at Kazan Arena and the last match will be played on July 3 at the Fisht Olympic Stadium in Sochi.

Other venues to host the last 16 fixtures are Cosmos Arena, Nizhny Novgorod Stadium, Luzhniki Stadium. Rostov Arena, Krestovky Stadium and Otkrytiye Arena. Each of these venues will host two last 16 fixtures.

World Cup Quarter Finals Fixtures – All You Need to Know

The quarterfinals will take place on 6th and 7th July. There will be two matches scheduled for each day. 8 teams which will have qualified from the last 16 will take part in the quarterfinals. Just like in the last 16 stage, two teams play each other and if the match ends level in the final whistle, the two teams go for extra time.

They will play two intervals of 15 minutes each and if the extra time also ends level, then they will proceed to penalties where the winner will be determined.

The quarterfinals will be held in the Nizhny Novgorod Stadium, Kazan Arena, Cosmos Arena and Fisht Olympic Stadium.

World Cup Semi-Finals Fixtures – All You Need to Know

The winners of the quarterfinals will face off in the semi-finals slated to take place on 10th and 11th July. Krestovsky Stadium also called the Zenit Arena will host the first semi-final. The stadium which has a retractable roof was opened in 2017 and hosted a series of FIFA Confederations Cup, a curtain raiser for the main FIFA tournament.

It has a capacity to host up to 68, 134. Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow will be host to the other semi-final. The stadium has a FIFA approved artificial pitch and has a capacity of 81,000.

World Cup Third Place Play-Off fixture – All You need to know

The losers of the semi-finals will face off in the third place play-off fixture to be played on July 14 at the Krestovsky Stadium in Saint Petersburg. The team that emerges third will earn $24m while the 4th team will pocket $22m. Teams that reach the quarter-final stage will earn $16m, while those in the last 16 will earn $12m. Teams that did not make it past the group stage will earn $8m.

World Cup Final – All You need to know

The 2018 FIFA World Cup will culminate in the final to be held on 15th July at the Luzhniki Stadium. The winners of the tournament will not only get the rights to brag for the next four years before the next event, but they will also pocket $38m. Germany are the current holders having won the title for the fourth time in the last event held in Brazil. The next tournament will be held in 2022 in Qatar.