48 team World Cup proposed for Qatar 2022
CONMEBOL, the South American football governing body, has requested that FIFA expand the number of World Cup teams for the 2022 edition of the tournament.
The request would see the 2022 World Cup including 48 teams rather than the current 32 team tournament model.
FIFA is not unfamiliar with this concept as they have already planned to make the size adjustment to the 2026 tournament. CONMEBOL president, Alejandro Dominguez, has asked FIFA president, Gianni Infantino, to expedite the 48 team expansion plan to the nearer 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
Adding an additional 16 teams to the tournament could potentially create logistical issues in Qatar as the tournament would increase from 64 games to 80 games. The 2026 tournament is believed to require around 14 stadia and so Qatar’s current amount of 8-12 may not be enough should the expansion go ahead.
The 2022 tournament has already seen its fair share of timing hurdles as its location has caused it to be held during the November-December time frame rather than the traditional June-July time frame, in order to combat the harsh Qatari heat.
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