Wednesday, 18 March 2020

Fifa postpone new Club World Cup

Fifa puts revamped Club World Cup on hold
Fifa confirmed the postponement of the new Club World Cup on Wednesday as it pledged to take a series of "exceptional measures" to protect football in the face of the coronavirus crisis, including a possible support fund for financially stricken clubs and associations.

World football's governing body accepted it would not play the new 24-team Club World Cup in June and July of 2021 after it was announced on Tuesday that the European Championship and Copa America would both be moved to that period.

The two tournaments were postponed by 12 months due to the coronavirus pandemic, and Fifa president Gianni Infantino had already said in advance of a meeting with the heads of the six continental ruling bodies on Wednesday that he would propose putting back the Club World Cup to later in 2021, or even to 2022 or 2023.

In the end, a statement released by Fifa simply said new dates for the highly lucrative tournament would be decided "at a later stage".

Fifa were seemingly left with little choice after Aleksander Ceferin, the president of the European game's governing body Uefa, said he had told Infantino on Tuesday "that the Club World Cup...cannot happen" in 2021 having postponed the Euro by a year. Ceferin did not indicate there was any offer of a compromise.

Ceferin has been critical of Infantino's Club World Cup plans, and Uefa and South American governing body CONMEBOL agreed together to put their continental competitions back by a year, having recently signed a cooperation agreement.

Meanwhile, Fifa announced the creation of a working group to deal with the consequences of the pandemic, including on players' contracts and transfers and to deal with the economic impact on the game.

"This exceptional situation requires exceptional measures and decisions. This crisis impacts the entire world and that is why solutions need to take into account the interests of all stakeholders around the world," said Infantino.


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