|host country: Qatar Dates: November 20 – December 18 coverage: Live on BBC TV, BBC iPlayer, BBC Radio 5 Live, BBC Sounds and the BBC Sport website and app. TV listings day by day – Full coverage details|
President Gianni Infantino said FIFA would reconsider the format of the 2026 World Cup in the United States, Mexico and Canada.
Infantino said this would be considered after the “success” of the four-team groups at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
“Here the groups of four were absolutely amazing,” said Infantino.
“Until the last minute of the last game, you wouldn’t know who was passing.
“We have to reconsider or at least re-discuss the formula. This is something that will definitely be on the agenda at the next meeting.”
The group stages in Qatar featured some exciting final matches as the two countries attempted to secure a runner-up spot in the Round of 16.
A four-team group format, with the top two teams reaching the knockout stages, has been used since the expansion of the Men’s World Cup to 32 teams in 1998.
Best World Cup Ever – Infantino
Infantino was speaking at a press conference in Qatar after attending a meeting of the FIFA Council.
With the third-place match and final looming, he said 3.27 million spectators attended the matches, compared to 3.3 million at the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
“Thank you to all involved, Qatar, all the volunteers for making this World Cup the best tournament ever,” said Infantino.
“The matches were played without incident. It was a very pleasant atmosphere.
“There is something going on when we talk about football becoming truly global, with an African team [Morocco] Reaching the semi-finals for the first time.
We also had a woman [Stephanie Frappart] Referee a match for the first time.
“It was an incredible success, approaching five billion in terms of viewership. Fans met the Arab world, it was very important for the future of all of us.”
A number of European countries planned to wear the OneLove badge during matches to promote diversity and inclusion but have not done so Due to possible sanctions from FIFA, FIFA.
Germany coach Hansi Flick said his players covered their mouths during the team photo before the opening World Cup match against Japan to “deliver the message that FIFA is keeping silent” the teams.
“When it comes to regulations and prohibitions, it’s not about bans, it’s about respecting the regulations,” said Infantino.
“Everyone is free to express their beliefs as long as it is done in a respectful way but when it comes to the field of play you need to respect and protect football.
“There are 211 football teams, not heads of state, and their fans want to come and enjoy football. That’s what we’re here for. I think we stand up for values, we stand up for human rights, we stand up for everyone’s rights at FIFA, at the World Cup.”
“But I also think that those fans who come to the stadium and all those billions watching on TV maybe – and we should think about that – feel like everyone has their own problems, they just want to spend 90 minutes without having to think about anything else than just Enjoying a moment of pleasure, joy, or emotion.”
A legacy of exploitation and shame
Qatar’s treatment of migrant workers, along with its stance on same-sex relations and its human rights record, have been among the main controversies that have overshadowed the build-up to the World Cup.
The CEO of the Qatar World Cup has been criticized by Human Rights Watch for showing “callous indifference.” When he said “Death is a natural part of life,” when asked about the death of a migrant worker in the tournament.
Human Rights Watch also said the 2022 World Cup “ends without a commitment from FIFA or the Qatari authorities to address the abuses, including unexplained deaths, that migrant workers have suffered to make the tournament possible over the past 12 years.”
Human rights organizations and a number of football federations They ask FIFA to create a compensation fund for migrant workers and their families, as well as the establishment of a center for migrant workers in Doha.
“Unless FIFA and Qatar provide a remedy for the widespread, unaddressed abuses suffered by the immigrants who prepared and delivered the tournament, they will have chosen to leave a legacy of exploitation and shame.” said Rothna Begum, senior researcher at Human Rights Watch.
Infantino said: “For us, every loss of life is a tragedy and everything we can do to change legislation to protect the conditions of workers, we have done and it has happened. Everything we can do for the future, we are doing.”
“We want to bring that experience into the future and make sure we can help, leverage and shine a spotlight on the World Cup to make the lives of people and their families a little bit better.”
World Cup legacies don’t last long – Lineker
The BBC presenter and former England striker Gary Lineker said that while there were positives to the World Cup, he did not think there would be any long-term legacy from the tournament.
“You see the diverse nature of the fans in the stadiums and there are a lot of positives in terms of the globalization of football,” he told BBC Sport.
“The legacy of the World Cup is very short-lived. People have different memories of their experiences in different places, and they are usually very positive because in the end it is football that excites us.
Then we go away and get on with the rest of our lives.”
migrant worker He died in a World Cup facility earlier in December. A Guardian newspaper report last year said that 6,500 migrant workers have died in Qatar since it won the World Cup in 2010.
The Qatari authorities denied this number, and said that there were three work-related deaths in construction work directly related to the tournament, and 37 other deaths not related to work.
World Cup officials say a number of reforms to improve health and safety standards for migrant workers have been implemented in recent years, and they are “committed” to making further improvements as a legacy of the tournament.
Lineker said at the start of the tournament that he was there “to inform, not to support” the issues in Qatar
“Many migrant workers lost their lives building stadiums,” Lineker added.
“There is no escaping the fact that the stadiums are incredible and the infrastructure they build is extraordinary – but at what cost?”
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