In a major reorganisation, the FIFA Club World Cup will be expanded to 32 teams. It means that the Fifa-run club tournament will more than quadruple in size from its current seven-sided format.
The major changes will go into effect in 2025, according to Fifa President Gianni Infantino. Chelsea won the 2021-22 version as the reigning Champions League champions, defeating Copa Libertadores champions Palmeiras in the February final. The European and South American clubs were joined in the semi-finals by teams from the other confederations in Africa, Asia, Oceania, North, and Central America, and the Caribbean, as well as the host nation’s league champions.
Following their victory over Liverpool in Paris in May, Real Madrid will be the European representative for the 2022-23 season. And Infantino confirmed that the tournament, as in 2013 and 2014, will be held in Morocco.
When was the FIFA Club World Cup launched?
The Club World Cup was launched in 2000 with Chelsea becoming the third English team to win it after Manchester United in 2008 and Liverpool in 2019.
Real Madrid has four titles, one more than rivals Barcelona. Corinthians of Brazil and Bayern Munich of Germany have both won two, while the European team has won 14 of the last 15.
Infantino also stated that a Women’s Club World Cup will be launched, though no further information was provided at this time.
Is everyone agreeing with this new concept?
UEFA is opposed to the idea, which they see as a threat to the Champions League’s primacy, but the clubs may be persuaded if it is sufficiently lucrative, with FIFA reportedly offering £150 million in prize money.
Over the last few weeks, negotiations have taken place in Qatar, but the clubs have refused to endorse the proposals.
FIFA had hoped to conclude the agreement at a meeting of the European Clubs Association, which represents the interests of the 220 leading European clubs, last Friday in Doha, but Infantino withdrew at the last minute when it became clear that his project would not be approved.
So now it’s a matter of time to see if this project will successfully begin in 2025 or not.
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