FIFA President Infantino seeks consensus on World Cup plans – Journal


ZURICH (Reuters) – FIFA President Gianni Infantino said on Wednesday he wanted to seek consensus on plans for a biennial World Cup and changes to the international match schedule after facing heavy criticism from the European federations.

The FIFA board has agreed to hold a world summit on December 20 to discuss proposals for a World Cup to be held every two years rather than every four years.

However, Infantino did not pledge to hold a binding vote on the plans – after UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin warned of this, saying there would be “dire consequences for football in general. If he went ahead.

FIFA will now await the results of a feasibility study as well as an economic analysis of the financial impact of the additional World Cup, which should be delivered before the summit.

A meeting between the FIFA and UEFA “technical groups” is also scheduled for next week.

Ceferin said UEFA will boycott an additional World Cup and his opposition to the plan has been echoed by European clubs and leagues.

Infantino noted that the debate had been “heated” but said it was a sign of change within FIFA that such a wide consultation was underway.

The chairman of the governing body of world football told a press conference that there were very different opinions on the idea coming from different parts of the world. Infantino said he believed it was possible to reach a common position.

He pointed out that so far FIFA had not asked countries whether or not they agreed with the proposals, but had simply presented them to spark discussion.

“I think we can come to a consensus because what I have said from the start is that we are only going to change things if we are completely convinced that it will be beneficial for everyone,” said Infantino. “By hosting a world summit later this year, we will now have the opportunity to present a plan and provide feedback to all of our FIFA member associations.”

There was, however, no strong attempt to sell the idea of ​​a biennial World Cup by Infantino, who instead emphasized that his role was to listen to all points of view.

“We have to see how we can approach the different opinions of different parties,” Infantino added. “We have to look at the sporting and economic merits, then we can have a reasoned discussion about the World Cups and maybe other competitions. I don’t know what the outcome will be.

He also suggested that the days of a country hosting a World Cup alone were numbered.

FIFA will hold its next full congress in Doha, Qatar on March 31, ahead of the

draw for the finals of the 2022 World Cup in the Gulf country.

Posted in Dawn, le 21 October 2021

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