FIFA will decide in March whether the 2022 World Cup could be extended to include 48 teams, Gianni Infantino , president of the world soccer body on Sunday said.
But he conceded it was not a simple decision.
Thirty-two teams contested this year's World Cup in Russia, widely feted as one of the most entertaining editions of the modern era.
Although FIFA is studying a proposal for 48-team future editions of the World Cup from 2026, a decision on Qatar won't be known until next year.
"We'll decide in March," Infantino said on French TV show Telefoot.
"We've already decided that future editions should feature 48 teams, we all think it's a good idea."
When the next edition is held in Qatar, it will be the first to be held in the Arab world and the first in a majority-Muslim country.
The Qatar FIFA 2022 World Cup will be held over November-December instead of the European summer months of June and July.
As a result, the competition has been shortened by three days -- a factor that could be decisive in the considerations on the 48-team format.
"It's not easy because it will be played over 28 days, instead of 31 for a normal World Cup," said Infantino.
Qatar 2022 organisers say they're preparing to host a 32-team World Cup, but the field could be expanded if a study concludes it is possible.
South American countries are behind a push to make the World Cup a 48-team event and the FIFA president says he remains open to the idea.