FIFA boss proposes 48-team World Cup
October 04 2016 10:01 AM
FIFA president Gianni Infantino takes selfies during a friendly football match with former Colombian players and international football stars in Bogota on Monday.


FIFA president Gianni Infantino has put forward a new 48-team format for the 2026 World Cup in a speech in Colombia on Monday.
The new format, he suggests, would see 32 teams play a round of playoffs before the main tournament begins.
The 16 winners would then progress to the group stage, together with 16 teams that had already qualified. The rest of the tournament would then run as normal, Infantino explained.
At present the tournament sees 32 teams competing in eight groups, before knockout games begin.
The head of football's world governing body, who came out in favour of more World Cup competing nations as he campaigned to replace Sepp Blatter earlier this year, had previously proposed a 40-team tournament, but now says that wouldn't work.
Germany coach Joachim Loew said on Sunday that an increase in teams at the World Cup could lead to a decrease in the quality of competition.
The FIFA Council meets in Zurich on October 13 and 14 to discuss the bidding process for the 2026 tournament as well as new World Cup formats.

Last updated: October 04 2016 01:39 PM

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