ZURICH (AP) — Nine years after winning the right to host the 2022 World Cup, Qatar will get to show it can stage a FIFA soccer tournament when the Club World Cup goes to Doha.
Champions League winner Liverpool will be favored to extend Europe’s run of 11 Club World Cup titles in 12 seasons at the Dec. 11-21 event.
Liverpool was drawn Monday to begin against one of four possible opponents, including Mexican club Monterrey, in the semifinals on Dec. 18. That is Qatar’s National Day, and the date of the next World Cup final.
Liverpool, a six-time European champion, has never won the world title. The English team played in the Intercontinental Cup in 1981 and 1984, and in the 2005 Club World Cup.
“I was astonished to see it was a trophy they haven’t lifted yet,” former Liverpool striker Michael Owen said after assisting in the draw at FIFA headquarters. “I think Liverpool will be determined to win it. To be defined as the world champions is a huge honor.”
Qatar will stage the next two editions of the often unloved club competition that FIFA is giving a radical reboot. A 24-team competition…