Africa wants to have a greater say in the decisions of FIFA. Indeed at the summit meeting between the presidents of 50 associations of the "Black Continent" to the president of FIFA, Gianni Infantino asked "correctly briskly" at least another 10 positions in the final phase of the World Cup of 2026. There is, that according to Council decision of FIFA in January, it was decided to expand the number of teams participating in the final phase from 32 to 48!
Put simply, the African Football Confederation (CAF- corresponding UEFA) applied for a doubling of Epirus teams . Until now Africa will have five teams in both the World Cup Russia 2018 and Qatar 2022. But now things are changing. The president of the South African federation, Danny Jordan - headed in the World Cup organizing committee in 2010 in the country - with the support of the bond, he spoke openly and directly increase the African teams. The pure and simple said the president of FIFA, the 3-day summit held in Standon Convention Centre from 21-23 of South Africa, in camera, and then visited and Harare, Zimbabwe. The conference was held three weeks before the African Confederation elections to be held in Addis Ababa on 16 March.
The new strong man of world football for the first time gave an opportunity to the representatives of the African federations to expose openly and together, problems and thoughts. And according to all the information everyone saw this move as an important step to further strengthen their relations.
The African then who supported Mr. Infantino in the elections of 2016 in Zurich, now believe that it is time to grab a bigger piece of the pie. Besides, that was one of the campaign promises of the current president of the International Federation.
The new version of the World Cup, which decided Infantino for 2026 enables African countries make up about 1/5 of the 211 members of FIFA to raise their stature and claim more. Beyond Asia (AFC), according to the evidence so far in the new project of FIFA is expected to take 8 or 9 positions, much better that with 4, 5 groups have now. South America (Conmebol), which has 10 member countries in 2026 is expected to have six seats from the 4.5 that has now.
The CONCACAF region, consisting of the Caribbean, Central and North America, is reportedly in line to present 6 5 groups. The moment has now 3 5. With regard to Oceania (OFC) is set to earn a direct ticket to the end, unlike now had half. The final allocation of places will be passed by the FIFA Council
16 teams wants Europe
The most powerful confederation of FIFA, Europe now has 13 teams in the final phase, will seek to increase the number to 16. Besides, one cannot ignore that the continent virtually dominates the football here and there and more money, at least for now.
The president of UEFA, Aleksandr Ceferin has stated repeatedly that priority should be given to 3 additional teams in Europe. Probably will become and accepted his request, the Council of FIFA will decide on the controversial issue of seats for the World Cup of 2026 in May in Bahrain, in the Congress.
The fact is that as a lawyer Gianni Infantino UEFA for years, is well aware of the object and all federations will earn more money from the changes. So that everyone is satisfied.
For. Manos Staramopoulos
Journalist- Analyst of International Football and Affairs
AIPS Football Member Commission, Member of IFFHS
Editor Discoveryfootball.com- English
Special correspondent France Football, A Bola, Mundo Deportivo
In Athens (Greece)