A new and shine Club World Cup: four years and more teams

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The Club World Cup is not only the perfect opportunity for millions of fans to see their favorite clubs but also the ideal setting for the world of sports betting aimed at this broad market. That is why the new project of FIFA, planned to start in 2021, has aroused a general interest. For more than two years FIFA has been discussing what to do with the Club World Cup. Some of the reasons why the current format of the tournament does not work are that it is not “sufficiently inclusive”, that it became “predictable” (nine of the last ten champions were from Europe) and that, as it is played in December, complicates the main European and South American leagues, which are in full competition.

FIFA evaluated seven possible configurations for the tournament and decided for 24 teams, divided into eight zones of three clubs each. Only the first of each group are classified, and then they play qualifying matches: quarterfinals, semifinals and finals. In total, 31 matches will be played every four years. The figure implies a decrease of 35% in relation to the 48 matches played over four years with the current version of a tournament per year.

In addition to modifying the tournament’s dispute mode and expanding the number of participating teams, FIFA also proposes a change of the calendar. If now it is disputed in December, it is intended that since 2021 it will be played between end of June and beginning of July. It has its reasons: it is a nod to the powerful European leagues, whose strong competition usually ends between May and the first days of June. In addition, there is no major international tournament at 2021-2025-2029, so it opens an interesting window for FIFA to impose the new format of the Club World Cup, and could guarantee maximum exposure.

Once the FIFA Council approves the “concept” of the new Club World Cup, the continental confederations will have to agree on how many teams and how they will classify them. FIFA made its own assessment of that distribution of seats, taking into account, above all, the economic importance of the participating clubs. UEFA would have half of the places available (12), followed by Conmebol (4.5), Asia (2), Africa (2), Concacaf (2) and Oceania (0.5). The organizing country would reserve the last spot.

According to the projections made, FIFA administration expects to raise between 650 and 1000 million dollars, which would be reinvested almost entirely in the clubs. The FIFA Council will make a decision on the reform just in June, but in the meantime football fans do not have to wait until 2021 to see the best teams and bet for the winners because the World Cup in Russia is getting closer, enjoy the fair play!