And we play for three months? Fifa, which had announced at the last World Cup still thinking about the format of the next one, in 2026 with 48 teams, would have achieved its goals. And it promises to be gratin. According to information from the New York Times, this World Cup, which will take place in three countries (Canada, United States and Mexico) will take place in the form of 12 pools of four teams, for a total of 104 matches played in 40 days. With recipes multiplied at the end, obviously. The idea is due to be approved on Tuesday after a meeting of the international body's board of directors.

The number of pools was the hottest topic, with the original idea of a division into 16 groups of three leading to a risk of implicit agreement between two teams in the third game. So go for pools of four, and too bad if it is necessary to fit it into an overloaded schedule, with 40 more games to play (104 against 64) and a competition extended by a good week.

Breaking News: FIFA, soccer's global governing body, is set to approve changes to the 2026 World Cup in North America that will add 24 games to an event that could take 40 days.

— The New York Times (@nytimes) March 14, 2023

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"Such a length is likely to irritate players' unions and clubs, already concerned about the schedule imposed on top players," the NYT said in its article. "It only concerns 1% of players," says Victor Montagliani, the boss of the North American confederation. In fact, the average professional doesn't play much. The idea that all players play too many games is not the reality. »

In terms of finances, it will also be an improvement with a strong increase in TV and commercial rights expected. FIFA has forecast revenues of some €10 billion over the four-year cycle to 2026, 3.5 billion more than the previous one. "Revenues will go up in terms of broadcasting, sponsorships, hospitality. We will play in huge stadiums usually dedicated to American football, with capacities of 80,000 to 90,000 seats, "projected President Gianni Infantino at a press conference in Qatar, referring to the figure of 5.5 million spectators. All is well, then.

  • Football
  • World Cup
  • FIFA
  • Gianni Infantino
  • Sport