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Soccer World Cup: Pros and cons of doing the competition every two years – International Soccer – Sports

For many soccer fans, life is divided into four-year periods, the span of time between a world and the next. And based on that calendar, the football programming in the world is proposed, taking into account the qualifying rounds, the continental tournaments and, even, the club competitions.

(You may be interested in: Gianni Infantino talks about the option of a World Cup in South America)

Obviously the Fifa also looks at it from the point of view of football as a business: according to The Economy Journal portal, the Russia World Cup 2018 It left the entity with income of 6.400 million dollars. About 2,000 million were spent on the tournament, which leaves 4,400 million free. That, without counting stadium expenses and others, which are borne by the organizing country.

Gianni Infantino, the man who assumed command of Fifa after ‘Fifagate’, launched a controversial proposal, which has already generated a pulse, especially with Uefa, which openly declared in opposition: to play the world Cup every two years.

Infantino has been testing the waters (in fact, he has just made a tour of South America, passing through Colombia, Venezuela, Chile and Argentina), and in the midst of public events, celebrations and others, he was discussing the scope of the proposal. And this Tuesday, after a meeting of the council of the Fifa, the top leader of the entity raised a “global virtual summit” for next December 20, which will address “the future of football.”

The proposal of the president of Fifa is that not only the men’s World Cup is every two years, but also the women’s, with which every year there would be a competition first level organized by the governing body. This alternation would also be made with continental competitions such as the America’s Cup and the Eurocup, although these, for now, continue in the period of four years between each edition. Although with the tournament Conmebol nowhat you know…

(Read also: The things that have to happen for the World Cup to be every two years)

Gianni Infantino, president of Fifa, is the author of the controversial proposal.

By the way, the South American Football Confederation had also declared against that proposal.

“The idea of ​​the World Cup is to bring together the most talented footballers, the most outstanding coaches and the best trained referees to determine in a fair and fair competition which is the best team on the planet. This cannot be achieved without proper preparation, without teams developing their skills and technicians designing and implementing strategies. All this translates into time, training, planning, games“Conmebol said in a statement on September 10.

“There is no sporting justification to shorten the period between World Cups,” he added.

In his journey through South America, Infantino even warmed the ear with the possibility of granting the headquarters of the 2030 World Cup to South America. “If you talk about a World Cup every year, male and female, of five neighboring countries that can organize it, in 20 years the World Cup can be organized by almost 100 countries, giving football a great boost. Today until a World Cup returns to a continent 24 years pass and that is more than a generation”Infantino said.

However, Conmebol’s position does not seem to have changed, despite the siren’s songs. “We believe that in two years it is impossible to hold a World Cup. We do not see how the times will exist to make a World Cup like this. Conmebol remains because so far there is no change. He (Infantino) listened to us and insisted that what he wanted to do was open a debate, ”Ramón Jesurún, president of the Colombian Federation and vice president of Conmebol, revealed to the journalist Carlos Antonio Vélez, from Antena 2.

(What’s more: World Cup every two years? Fifa asked and that’s how the survey came out)

In two years it is impossible to hold a World Cup. We do not see how the times will exist to make a World Cup like this

“The ideal would be to be every two years, but the times do not give us. It would create a lot of difficulties to be able to do it. Today they do not give us the times and within the business structure of the South American federations it would also have difficulties”Added Jesurún.

It would be necessary to ask what the format of the playoffsEspecially in continents like Africa or Asia, where this process begins well in advance. The African qualifier for the 2022 World Cup, for example, started on June 6, 2019, with a match between Mongolia and Brunei. Will time reach?

But if Conmebol does not agree with the idea, Uefa already seems to be in direct opposition to the project. French newspapers The team and The world revealed a study that Uefa carried out on how the idea of ​​the World Cup every two years would affect its federations.

The calculation is that between 3,000 and 3,500 million dollars would not be earned, only in relation to national teams, without taking into account the effects on club competitions. It would also be the death sentence for a newly created tournament that has already had two editions, the League of Nations of the Uefa.

There is another block of federations that could even go much further. “If a majority within Fifa decides to approve a proposal on biennial World Cups, Nordic federations will have to contemplate new actions and scenarios that are in line with our core values”Said a joint statement from six of the Nordic federations affiliated with Uefa: Denmark, Faroe Islands, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden.

(Keep reading: Soccer World Cup every two years? Conmebol fixes its position)

Russia World Cup 2018

Several entities assure that there is no sports justification to shorten the period between World Cups.

And the players?

Fifa has not only probed the issue among the leaders, but has also rolled the ball among the selectors nationals. The French Arsene Wenger, a former Arsenal technician, was appointed to design a proposal for an international calendar and consult it with the technicians. On Tuesday he held a virtual meeting for it and this Thursday he will have another.

The international calendar maintains the balance between club and national football, because it determines the dates on which footballers represent their countries. This balance is 80-20, and we want to keep it that way. However, the current format no longer works and is obsolete, ”said Wenger, appointed director of development for world football.

The idea is to have only two selection periods, in March and October, but in which between seven and eight games would be played. That would force the local leagues to stop in those months.

Infantino, for example, stressed that the current format greatly complicates the work for footballers from continents other than Europe. “Today, a player like Lionel Messi travels 400,000 kilometers in 4 years, while a European player of the same level travels almost ten times less,” he said.

Although the consultations have included the captains of the national teams, the football players, in general, they do not feel heard. The International Federation of Professional Footballers (FIFPro) also came out against the idea.

(You may be interested in: Paraguay, Colombia’s rival in November, already has a new coach)

Unforgettable images left by the 2018 World Cup in Russia

Footballers, in general, do not feel heard in their position on this possible change.

Photo:

CHRISTOPHE SIMON / AFP

“Players have natural physiological limits, and an inherent interest in the sustainable advancement of the game: the success of the sport depends on their physical and mental well-being. What we decide at the highest levels of the game affects thousands of professionals around the world, ”stated FIFPro General Secretary Jonas Baer-Hoffmann.

“Without the agreement of the players, who give life to all the competitions with their presence on the playing field, none of these reforms will have the required legitimacy,” he said.

Referents of women’s football also showed their opposition. “Adding World Cups to earn more money is an idea that does not fit the current situation. It is a high-level sport that demands a lot from athletes. Chaining tournaments is very tough physically and mentally. This shows that the decision makers are not on the pitch and have no regard for the players.”Ada Hegerberg, winner of the first women’s Ballon d’Or in 2018, told AFP.

Adding World Cups to earn more money is an idea that does not fit the current situation

A traditional critic of the work of Fifa and Conmebol, the Paraguayan José Luis Chilavert, also went against the proposal with everything. “I think they give more importance to economics than to sports. They are not interested in the health of the professional footballer, “Chilavert told Radio del Plata, adding:” Domínguez asked Fifa to last 25 minutes. One asks for the World Cup every two years and the other for halftime, these people don’t understand anything about football ”.

For now, Infantino plays with many factors against it. But he has already managed to increase the teams for the 2026 World Cup from 36 to 48. Will he have the same power of conviction now?

JOSÉ ORLANDO ASCENCIO
SPORTS SUBEDITOR

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