World Cup 2026: Tournament to increase by 40 matches to 104 fixtures as part of 48-team expansion

by | Mar 14, 2023 | Global Football News | 0 comments

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Argentina's Lionel Messi receives the trophy from FIFA President Gianni Infantino, left, and the Emir of Qatar Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, after winning the World Cup final soccer match between Argentina and France at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, Qatar, Sunday, Dec. 18, 2022. Argentina won 4-2 in a penalty shootout after the match ended tied 3-3. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

The choice to grow from 64 to 104 fits – in place of the eighty initially deliberate in 2026 – is due to come at a assembly of the governing body‘s ruling council in Kigali, Rwanda; adding suits enables FIFA chase its target of extra than £9bn in sales however it additionally solves layout troubles
FIFA is ready to approve plans on Tuesday for the most important-ever global Cup in 2026.

At a meeting of the FIFA Council in Kigali, Rwanda, it will likely be showed that there can be 104 games in 2026 in preference to the 64 games which had been played in Qatar remaining 12 months.

The extra 40 games are needed due to the fact the match is expanding from 32 to forty eight teams.

The 2026 event within the united states of america, Mexico and Canada may have 12 groups of 4 teams. The top teams will improve to a round of 32 with the 8 quality 1/3positioned groups.

FIFA have been considering a layout of 12 organizations of 3 teamshowever the excitement generated by the traditional 4group organization layout used inside the Qatar international Cup has helped to persuade the FIFA Council to stick with 4team organizations.

The mixed number of relaxationrelease and event days stays the same as preceding global Cups in 2010, 2014 and 2018 – 56 days.

It method groups accomplishing the very last will now ought to play 8 fitsas opposed to the seven played by way of Qatar 2022 finalists Argentina and France.

The final within the u.s. is due to be on Sunday July 19, 2026.

PFA CEO Maheta Molango has criticised the FIFA proposals. He said: “basically, the soccer calendar needs a complete reset.

“The elevated world Cup format being introduced for 2026 way that, over againmore games are being forced into an already overcrowded agenda.

it’s far right that FIFA have listened to players‘ issues and announced a running group to deal with the critical problems surrounding fixture congestion and player welfare.

butit is very difficult to peer how that aligns with the steady expansion of the domestic and international calendar.

“We recognize that the current workload players face is having an ongoing effect on their well-beingboth on and rancid the pitch. We can not genuinely push them until they destroy.”

Why FIFA had a ‘rethink‘ over global Cup layout

“FIFA had a hassle due to the fact that is going to be the primary world Cup with 48 teams so that they were trying to workout how it turned into going to be organised.

“It become going to be 16 businesses of 3 teams and you can have had the scenario in which teams might have handiest performed video games before being knocked out and going home.

“FIFA had a reconsider, which was accelerated by using the world Cup in Qatar. FIFA idea the Qatar world Cup changed into exciting – there was a lot jeopardy and so much at stake.

this is why they’ve had a observe it once more and at this FIFA Council meeting in Rwanda, it is going to be formally authorized.

plenty of traditionalists will say they may be unhappy with forty eight teams due to the fact it’s miles too many teams and the best goes to go throughit is also awful for the environment having greater groups flying around Mexico, Canada and america.

the other argument, although, is that FIFA is fabricated from 211 specific countries and of those nations only 78 have ever performed inside the world Cup, so they had been lobbying FIFA to mention they want to have a risk to play in the world Cup otherwise their requirements of football aren’t going to improve.

in case you observe the slot allocation, at the world Cup in Qatar we handiest had 5 countries from Africa even though there are 54 African international locations which might be contributors of FIFA.

“Their slot allocation goes to head up from five to 9, there are now going to be eight groups from Asia, six groups from Concacaf so in case you take off your blinkers and examine football no longer just from a western eu angle, the relaxation of the world – nicely, the people I talk to – do like that the sector Cup will be accelerated and it clearly will be the sector Cup.”

FIFA expands club world Cup and approves new event

also accepted through the FIFA Council in Rwanda have been plans for an improved club international Cup with a view to see Chelsea play within the first version inside the summer time of 2025.

The 4 Champions League winners from 2021 to 2024 will qualify for the event, which ensures a place for Chelsea and closing year‘s victors real Madrid, plus the 2023 and 2024 winners.

Twelve of the 32 teams taking element might be from Europe and the event will be held every 4 years. The ultimate 8 european places are probable to be allocated according to UEFA club co-efficient rankings.

This year‘s seven-crew event is being held in Saudi Arabia in December.

real Madrid won the 2022 club international Cup in Morocco ultimate month, beating Al-Hilal 53 in the very last of the seven-team tournament.

further, the FIFA Council also unanimously approved plans for a new annual competition among the champions of its six confederations.

the first competition will be held next year and will feature the Champions League winners gambling the winners of the international confederations play-offs.

This competition will update the modern seven-team layout of the club global Cup, meaning the 2023 membership world Cup in Saudi Arabia will be the last inside the contemporary layout.

the brand new – and as but unnamed – competition will start in 2024, followed by way of the reworked club global Cup a year later.


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