Odisha to host India vs. Qatar match for FIFA World Cup 2026, AFC Asian Cup 2027 joint qualifiers

Bhubaneswar: Football fans in Odisha have a reason to cheer that the state has been selected to host one home match of India against Qatar for the upcoming FIFA World Cup 2026 and AFC Asian Cup 2027 joint qualifiers.

The Football Association of Odisha will serve as the host for the much-anticipated India vs. Qatar match, a critical fixture in FIFA World Cup 2026 and AFC Asian Cup joint qualifiers, the All India Football Federation (AIFF) announced today.

The match will be held at the iconic Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar on November 21, 2023.

After the successful hosting of the FIFA U17 Women’s World Cup and International Cup matches at Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar, the country’s eastern state will organise one more international football event.

This significant decision by AIFF reaffirms Odisha’s growing reputation as a hub for sports and a destination of choice for international events, particularly Football. This promises to be a momentous occasion for football enthusiasts across the nation. Bhubaneswar, the host city, also has five FIFA standard natural pitches that further adds to the state’s ability to host marquee football tournaments, an official release stated.

“We are immensely honoured and thrilled to host the India vs. Qatar match for the FIFA World Cup 2026 and AFC Asian Cup 2027 joint qualifiers. This event not only showcases Odisha’s passion for football but also highlights our commitment to promoting Football in the state. We look forward to welcoming players, fans, and football enthusiasts from across the nation to witness this historic moment in Odisha,” Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said.

The match between India and Qatar holds immense significance as both teams vie for qualification in the prestigious FIFA World Cup 2026 and AFC Asian Cup 2027. Fans can expect a thrilling contest that will be remembered for years to come.

The announcement comes as a testament to Odisha’s world-class sporting infrastructure, dedicated fan base, and its unwavering support for sports at all levels. As always, Odisha will ensure the successful execution of this high-profile match, providing top-notch facilities and security for players and spectators alike. AIFF’s decision to entrust Odisha with this event reflects the confidence placed in the state’s ability to organize and manage international sporting events of this magnitude, the release stated.


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