FIFA to expand World Cup teams starting 2026
The international governing body of football announced on Twitter that the council voted unanimously in favor of increasing the number of teams to 48 instead of 32.
This means that the number of tournament matches will increase from 64 to 80, but the eventual winners will still play only seven games. According to the new structure, the tournament will be divided into 16 groups of 3 teams.
“Expansion will also benefit the development of football all over the world,” said FIFA president Gianni Infantino who was spoken about his expansion desires at a sports conference in Dubai in December.
This expansion will probably increase revenue to £5.29bn for a 48-team tournament, giving a potential profit rise of £521m, according to a FIFA research.
The FIFA Council unanimously decided on a 48-team #WorldCup as of 2026:
16 groups of 3 teams. Details to follow after the meeting.
— FIFA Media (@fifamedia) January 10, 2017
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