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Carlsen – Nepomniachtchi 2021 – all the information

The World Chess Championship 2021 aka known as the Carlsen – Nepomniachtchi 2021 match will be held 24 November – 16 December in Dubai. The battle for the most important title in the sport of chess will be between the reigning champion Magnus Carlsen and his challenger Ian Nepomniachtchi.

Magnus Carlsen, as a reigning world champion, is seeded automatically in the final by the traditional FIDE rules. Ian Nepomniachtchi earned his place through a rigorous competitive selection that culminated with the Candidates matches – a tournament that Nepomniachtchi convincingly won.

Right after the Candidates Magnus congratulated Nepo and showed himself eager for the upcoming match in Dubai


Nepo’s reaction in the press conference after qualifying was unequivocal, “[The qualification to the World Chess Championship] is a huge milestone in my career, and maybe in my life also”


Media reactions to the upcoming Carlsen – Nepomniachtchi match

There was a worldwide echoing of Nepomniachtchi’s qualification for the match with Carlsen – from solid social media buzz to mainstream media headlines, governments and organizations, chess professionals and fans.

See a comprehensive list here: Carlsen – Nepo 2021 , the reactions

The Carlsen – Nepomniachtchi venue

Carlsen – Nepomniachtchi 2021 match will be part of the Dubai Expo. The venue will be the glamorous Dubai Exhibition Center. Mohamed Al Ansaari, Vice President – Communications at Expo 2020 Dubai, commented: “Expo Dubai will be a global celebration of the very best of humankind, held in one of the world’s most welcoming and ambitious nations – what better place to host a thrilling showdown between the brightest minds in chess?” The World Chess Championship match also fits in one of the concepts of Dubai Expo, “Connecting minds, creating the future”.

The Expo Dubai and the FIDE World Championship were scheduled to take place in 2020. Now a year later, Expo Dubai has clearly evolved to accommodate the new reality that follows the pandemic development. Here is the presentation video of the Dubai Expo 2021. How the World Chess Championship will be affected, we will get to know in the coming months.


World Chess Championship 2021 prize fund

The organizers have secured a hefty 2 euros prize fund. It will be split 60 percent for the winner and 40 percent for the runner-up. This is a solid increase from the 1 million euros in the 2014, 2016, and 2018 World Chess Championships, but still a lower amount than the 2013 World Chess Championship where the players received 2,65 million euros.

The 2013 World Chess Championship also holds the records for highest viewership (aka reach) in the history of chess. The 2021 World Chess Championship, following the success of the movie “Queen’s Gambit” and the migration of most chess events online due to the pandemic, has all the chances to surpass this record.

Revisit: World Chess Championship 2013 with higher viewership in GQ than Victoria Secret’s show

Carlsen – Nepomniachtchi match format

The Carlsen – Nepomniachtchi 2021 match will have an extended format. Instead of the 12 games that were traditionally played in the past decade, this match will feature 14 games. In case the result is equal after game 14, tiebreaks will follow.

Replay: the games of Nepomniachtchi from Candidates 2021

Nepomniachtchi had a shaky start, but overall solid run at the 2021 part of the Candidates tournament. Here are his games for replay with light analysis

Candidates Chess 2021: Vachier-Lagrave – Nepomniachtchi 1-0

Candidates Chess 2021: Grischuk – Nepomniachtchi 1/2-1/2

Candidates Chess 2021: Nepomniachtchi – Alekseenko 1-0

Candidates Chess 2021: Nepomniachtchi – Caruana 1/2-1/2

Candidates Chess 2021: Wang Hao – Nepomniachtchi 0-1

Candidates Chess 2021: Nepomniachtchi – Vachier-Lagrave 1/2-1/2

Candidates Chess 2021: Ding – Nepomniachtchi 1-0