FIFA confirms new 48-team World Cup format for 2026
FIFA have confirmed their choice to revert again to a four-team format for the 2026 World Cup.
The following World Cup, which will likely be held throughout the USA, Mexico and Canada, will characteristic 48 nations as an alternative of 32.
As a result of enhance within the variety of taking part groups, the event was set to characteristic 16 teams of three.
Nonetheless, the proposed format was known as into query following an thrilling last spherical of group video games on the 2022 World Cup, which used eight teams of 4.
Forward of the 73rd FIFA Congress in Rwanda, the FIFA Council have confirmed numerous necessary bulletins, together with the choice to modify the 2026 World Cup again to a four-team group format.
The transfer will increase the competitors from the preliminary proposal of 80 matches to 104, which is able to end in a new spherical of 32 stage.
International locations that end within the prime two or rank as one of many eight greatest third-placed groups will advance to the knockout rounds.
Commenting on the choice, FIFA stated: “The revised format mitigates the chance of collusion and ensures that each one the groups play a minimal of three matches, whereas offering balanced relaxation time between competing groups.”
FIFA additionally confirmed the boys’s worldwide calendar from 2025-2030, which incorporates the choice to play the World Cup last on Sunday, 19 July 2026.
Soccer’s world governing physique additionally introduced that the ladies’s soccer calendar will proceed with six worldwide home windows per yr for 2024 and 2025.
Following issues about participant welfare as a result of membership and worldwide schedule, FIFA have arrange a job drive to take a look at participant welfare.
FIFA President Gianni Infantino stated: “FIFA promoted a really international strategy to the discussions on the worldwide match calendar, which thought of the views of all key stakeholders.
“Our elementary goal is to have readability on this subject, and to have significant soccer matches whereas defending the well-being of the gamers and recognising that many areas want extra aggressive soccer.”
Amongst their different bulletins, FIFA authorised the entry checklist for the new 32-team Membership World Cup, which is able to start in June 2025.
Because of their Champions League success in 2021, Chelsea have been confirmed as one among 12 European sides who will seem on the event.