Wednesday, 10 May 2017

FIFA agrees 9 slots for Africa in World Cup

FIFA agrees 9 slots for Africa in World Cup

FIFA Council has ratified expansion of countries to participate in the World Cup to 48.

The expansion was agreed upon during their meeting in Bahrain.

Africa could have as many as 10 teams competing at the 2026 World Cup after the allocation.

The continent is guaranteed nine places, up from the current five, while a 10th nation will enter a six-team play-off tournament to decide the final two qualifiers, raising the potential of an extra place for the continent.

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The Confederation of African Football, CAF, had been lobbying for at least 10 spots, with the continent providing 54 of FIFA’s 211 member associations, a little more than a quarter.

Europe has seen their number of guaranteed slots raised from 13 to 16, while the North and Central American confederation has also seen their number of teams doubled from a guaranteed three to six, while Asia goes up from four to eight.

Oceania will now have one guaranteed place, having previously had to go through a play-off with a team from South America.

New Zealand should qualify for every World Cup in the expanded format with little competition coming from their region after Australia jumped ship to the Asian confederation.

The most teams that Africa has previously had at the World Cup were six in 2010 when South Africa hosted and Nigeria, Cameroon, Algeria, Ghana and Ivory Coast competed.

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