Mon. Feb 6th, 2023

Qatar’s World Cup is in its final stages. The knockout stage match is going on. However, in the meantime, the format of the next World Cup is complicated. The 48-team World Cup next time is a certainty. But in which format the World Cup will be played, there is a debate. FIFA was mulling a proposal. But it has been put on hold for now. This was stated by Arsene Wenger, the former coach of Arsenal and the head of FIFA Global Football.

In the next World Cup, there will be a total of 48 teams with 16 teams in addition to 32 teams. It was decided that 16 groups of three teams would be formed. Two teams from each group will qualify for the knockouts. However, seeing one incident after another in the World Cup this time, the proposal has been debated for the time being. Because, in that case, a team can get knocked out even if it plays well.

Not only that, there can be a massive build-up to get to the knockouts. As per the rules since 1986, four teams will play matches at the same time in the final round of the group stage. No party gets any extra advantage in this. But if there are three teams in the group, not all teams can play matches at the same time in the last round. In this case, the two teams participating in the last round match can play according to their advantage to advance to the next round. As a result, the possibility of failure cannot be ruled out.

In a press conference on Sunday, Wenger said, “It is not yet decided which format will be played. There can be 16 groups of three teams or 12 groups of four teams. Or 12 groups of four may be divided into two halves. I can’t fix that. The FIFA Council will decide. Hopefully it will be announced next year.”

Will the quality of World Cup play decrease overall for the 48 teams? Wenger refuses to accept. He said, “We will see 16 more great teams in the 2026 World Cup. If the number of competing teams increases, many countries will be interested. They will try to raise the standard of their domestic football. Many will want to match themselves on the world stage of football. In the end, football will improve overall.