CAF urges ‘open minded’ debate on biennial World Cup

September 15 – The Confederation of African Football (CAF) has declared itself open-minded over the proposal of a biennial World Cup, seeking to support the “best interests of football”.

In a statement, African football supremo Patrice Motsepe said: “CAF is of the view that at this stage, what is most important, is for the discussions and deliberations to continue taking place, in an open minded manner and with the objective of doing what is in the best interest of all Member Associations, the Confederations, football players and other stakeholders worldwide.”

Motsepe’s words echo those of both the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) and Concacaf, who have expressed support for the consultation world federation FIFA is conducting.

The Saudi Arabian Football Federation (SAFF), closely aligned with FIFA president Gianni Infantino, first mooted the idea to move to a two-year cycle at Congress. Last week, FIFA’s director of development Arsene Wenger outlined the plans and how they would affect the international match calendar.

Motsepe, crowned CAF president by acclamation in March, has previously claimed that “African football could probably be the biggest beneficiary of a World Cup every two years”. In summer, CAF’s executive committee endorsed the proposal following a meeting in Morocco.

The new statement waters down that firm endorsement, but still suggests CAF backs the introduction of a biennial World Cup.

European football’s governing body UEFA and the South American Football Confederation Conmebol as well as clubs and national leagues oppose the plans.

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