The FIFA World Cup, as we all know, comes every four years. That’s how it’s been since 1930. Though this wouldn’t change, FIFA President Gianni Infantino wants to stir some things into the pot. He recently proposed introducing an additional mini-world cup, which would feature eight international teams and occur every two years. The existing World Cup falls on the even years, while this mini-world cup, potentially starting 2021, would fall on the odd years.
Critics are worried this new cup would interfere with the significance of the original World Cup and also over-complicate the current state of international soccer. Not to mention, the price tag. A group of investors is already down, and they’re willing to put $25 million towards the mini-cup. Oh, wait, sorry typo. I meant billion. $25 billion. So what’s Infantino’s motivation behind all this?
In his eyes, the mini-world cup or the “Final 8” would help with reforming international soccer. Infantino has already overseen the expansion of the current World Cup. In 2026, 48 teams instead of the usual 32, will participate. Though the introduction of the mini-world cup would get rid of the Confederations Cup, other international tournaments such as the European Championship, Copa America, and African Nations Cup would continue.
Infantino did want to make clear that FIFA would not be the sole financial beneficiaries from this tournament. He insisted that the revenue from the “Final 8” would be redistributed. These plans to officially introduce this tournament are not yet set in stone. There are two main barriers. The first being members of FIFA’s decision-making Council still have to approve the plans, and the second being that other countries would have to set up similar competitions in order for this mini-world cup to work.