A schedule closer to normal, even if it is still packed with competitions postponed due to Covid-19. This is what is expected from the sports calendar for 2022.
In football, the first big event on hold will be the Club World Cup last season, which takes place after the holidays for the second time in a row and again with Palmeiras in attendance.
The most anticipated attraction is the World Cup. And the wait will be long, as the tournament has been moved to the end of the year – not because of the pandemic, but because of weather conditions in Qatar. Brazil and 12 other countries have already secured their places, and the other 19 places will be decided by March.
The spotlight will mainly focus on the European feed. The new competition format, with semi-finals and finals in singles and elimination duels, promises even more emotion. As if seeing Cristiano Ronaldo, Robert Lewandowski and other stars in the hot seat wasn’t enough.
In Brazil, the Brazilian Football Confederation held state championships on 16 dates until the beginning of April. With a tighter schedule due to the World Cup, national and continental competitions will end a little earlier than usual: the winners of the Copa del Rey, Sudamericana and Libertadores will be announced in October.
The schedule is also packed full of Olympic sports, with the year focusing on world championships already planned – such as women’s volleyball and basketball – and others rescheduled during the pandemic – cases of swimming, athletics and beach volleyball.
Another highlight is the Winter Olympics. Beijing will become the first city to host both editions of the competition, having hosted the Summer Games in 2008. However, this choice led to a crisis and led to a diplomatic boycott of countries such as the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia. Brazil will be represented in at least two events: cross-country skiing and alpine skiing.
In addition, expectations are that most of the competitions will be held in pre-pandemic molds. The world’s tennis, surfing and Formula 1 circuits, for example, have announced full schedules for this year. The motorsports major class is predicting the biggest season in its history, with 23 races.
While things are expected to return to normal, it is always worth noting that the pandemic is not over yet and may once again cause delays or transfers, as in the case of the Copa America Futsal. After an impasse with CONMEBOL over the health measures in place in Brazil, the Brazilian Federation requested the cancellation of the tournament, which was scheduled to start on January 29, in Rio.
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