Clubs, Esperance Sportive de Tunis, FIFA Club World Cup, Liverpool, Monterrey, Story

Find out the date and details of the 2019 FIFA Club World Cup.

When and where is the 2019 Club World Cup being played?

FIFA awarded Qatar hosting rights for the next two editions of the Club World Cup for 2019 and 2020. Matches will be played in December with exact dates yet to be confirmed, though it is likely to be Dec. 11 through to the final on Dec. 22. 

Who is in the Club World Cup?

It features the continental champions of Europe, South America, Asia, Africa, CONCACAF and Oceania, plus the Al Sadd, champions of the Qatar Stars League to represent the hosts.

The confirmed qualifiers so far are:

Europe: Liverpool (England), Champions League winners
Africa: Esperance Sportive de Tunis (Tunisia), CAF Champions League winners
Concacaf: Monterrey (Mexico), CONCACAF Champions League winners
Oceania: Hienghene Sport (New Caledonia), OFC Champions League winners

Still to be decided:

Asia: AFC Champions League winners will be known on Nov. 24*
South America: Copa Libertadores winners will be known on Nov. 23
Host team: Al Sadd (Winners of Qatar Stars League)*

*If Al-Duhail of Qatar win the AFC Champions League, then the AFC Champions League runners-up will replace Al Sadd in the Club World Cup. 

What is the format of the Club World Cup?

Playoff round: Hienghene Sport will play Al Sadd to make the competition proper.

Quarterfinals: Esperance Sportive de Tunis, Monterrey and the AFC Champions League winners enter at this stage, joined by the winners of the playoff round.

Fifth-place playoff: The two losing quarterfinalists meet.

Semifinals: Liverpool and the winners of the Copa Libertadores enter at this stage, and will be each drawn to play the winners of one of the quarterfinal ties. 

Final: The two winners from the semifinals play for the trophy.

But hasn’t FIFA making the Club World Cup bigger?

Yes, FIFA has decided to make the Club World Cup a much bigger tournament, featuring 24 teams, but this is not planned to happen until 2021. However, Europe’s top clubs have threatened to boycott the expanded competition.  

FIFA will approach potential hosts for the expanded edition of the club tournament before making a recommendation at the next council meeting in Shanghai on Oct. 23 and 24.

The Club World Cup will continue in its current format in 2019 and 2020.

What happens to Liverpool’s Premier League fixtures?

Liverpool will have to take a break from their domestic Premier League games to travel for the Club World Cup. 

Based on the Club World Cup schedule from 2018, Liverpool will miss the round of games on Dec. 21 (with the Club World Cup final on Dec. 22). They would return to Premier League action on Boxing Day, Dec. 26.

The break didn’t do Chelsea any harm in 2012-13. The beat Aston Villa 8-0 in their first match back in England. 

Liverpool will have to rearrange the one game they skip, which will likely be played in the New Year due to the Champions League match schedule beforehand. The Premier League fixtures will be published on June 13.  

Liverpool will also play in the UEFA Super Cup in August. 

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