World Cup Expansion to 48 Teams (Update: FIFA Council Agrees 2026 Slot Allocation)

Discussion in 'FIFA and Tournaments' started by shizzle787, Dec 4, 2015.

  1. Footsatt

    Footsatt Member+

    Apr 8, 2008
    Michigan
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I don't get what you are saying here. Please explain. What battle are you talking about?
     
  2. Blondo

    Blondo Member+

    Sep 21, 2013
    Friend, ITT you yourself provided an article to back up your claim that UEFA only wanted 16 spots/didn't want more. It was pointed out to you that your claim was false. Even in the same article you could read they wanted more spots but it was an unwinnable battle.
     
  3. Gibraldo

    Gibraldo Member

    Nov 17, 2005
    Pfaffenhofen / Ilm
    Club:
    FK Crvena Zvezda Beograd
    Nat'l Team:
    Serbia
    #3828 Gibraldo, Jan 10, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2019
    We at laenderspiel.tv have now set up a 28 day, 48 team world cup schedule based on our special format (not 16 groups of 3, but 8 groups of 6 with each group member having 3 first round matches)

    In an example world cup, we would have clashes like Argentina - Portugal, Uruguay - England or even Brazil - Italy already in the group phase.

    Still, each team would have a minimum of 2 rest days between two of their matches.

    Just have a look.

     
  4. JLSA

    JLSA Member

    Nov 11, 2003
    And I'll (effectively) ask the question that I asked back then (but didn't get an answer).

    Look at Group F.
    Two of Russia's games are against Netherlands and Australia.
    Two of Netherlands' games are against Russia and Australia.

    But Netherlands other match is against Trinidad, while Russia's is against Colombia. If I was a fan of Russia, and I got the same results as Netherlands when I played Australia, and then drew with Netherlands, but was eliminated because I lost to Colombia and they beat Trinidad, I might be just a little bit miffed by your system.

    Or are you going to claim this isn't possible.

    I think I asked almost this question before - but got no response.

    J
     
    unclesox repped this.
  5. Gibraldo

    Gibraldo Member

    Nov 17, 2005
    Pfaffenhofen / Ilm
    Club:
    FK Crvena Zvezda Beograd
    Nat'l Team:
    Serbia
    #3830 Gibraldo, Jan 11, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
    Sorry, if I missed out on that.

    Well, the basic of this system is, that each team (independend of it's own seeding) will have 3 matches against a team of each pot (X, Y, Z).

    So all teams of F1 play each other as well as all of F2. For the third encounter (distributed over all 3 matchdays of a group), each team has yet to face the team drawn from the same pot into the parallel group, so the X-seeded of F1 and F2 play each other as well as the Y-seeded and the Z-seeded.

    Your feeling of unevenness is more a result of my outdated seeding for the "mock draw". I had done it long before the World Cup 2018 draw, where FIFA changed its rule to go strictly for the FIFA ranking when it comes to seeding. In fact, today Russia would propably be a X-seeded team, as well as Netherlands and Colombia. Trinidad would propably be located in pot Z.

    If the seeding would be more up to date, the system itself would guarantee a quite fair distribution of matches for each team and especially a simultaneous last matchday within each group with 3 parallel matches and epic drama due to a constantly changing live table while the 90 minutes are ticking away.

    Far better than these odd 16 groups of 3 where 16 teams have a bye on the last matchday and can do nothing, whereas the last match contenders could arrange something like a "perfect result" for themselves.
     
  6. Paul Calixte

    Paul Calixte Moderator
    Staff Member

    Orlando City SC
    Apr 30, 2009
    Miami, FL
    Club:
    Orlando City SC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Ok, looking back, I see the issue: as you said, if you had your system + FIFA's earlier policy of pots being set by geography, the result would be an unbalanced mess. In a second I'm gonna have some fun and re-do your draw with pots based on FIFA ranking only, and we'll see how it turns out.


    CO-SIGN
     
  7. Gibraldo

    Gibraldo Member

    Nov 17, 2005
    Pfaffenhofen / Ilm
    Club:
    FK Crvena Zvezda Beograd
    Nat'l Team:
    Serbia
    curious to see your schedule after the redraw. take care that not more than 2 teams of a confed will be in a group of six or at least that if they are in a group of six, that they wont play each other.
     
    Paul Calixte repped this.
  8. Paul Calixte

    Paul Calixte Moderator
    Staff Member

    Orlando City SC
    Apr 30, 2009
    Miami, FL
    Club:
    Orlando City SC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    #3833 Paul Calixte, Jan 11, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
    Assumptions going into the draw:

    1. Official distribution for 48-team finals (UEFA 16, CAF 9, AFC 8, Concacaf 6, Conmebol 6, OFC 1, Playoffs 2)

    2. Conmebol and CAF win the playoffs

    3. Pots set up entirely by ranking, with host Qatar as top seed (yeah, I know...deal with it :D )

    4. Six pots in play.

    5. Given multiple confederations with more than eight teams in this tournament, principle of no more than 2 from any confederation in a given group. By 2/3 of the way through the draw (i.e. applied for the fourth pot), each group must have at least one European side in it.

    6. Schedule set up slightly differently:

    Group -

    -1 and -2 from Pots U and V
    -3 and -4 from Pot W and X
    -5 and -6 from Pot Y and Z

    Group schedule possibilities (each group to be drawn with a schedule):

    1

    Matchday 1:

    -1 vs. -6
    -5 vs. -2
    -3 vs. -4

    Matchday 2:

    -4 vs. -1
    -2 vs. -3
    -6 vs. -5

    Matchday 3:

    -1 vs. -2
    -3 vs. -6
    -4 vs. -5

    2

    Matchday 1:

    -1 vs. -2
    -3 vs. -6
    -5 vs. -4

    Matchday 2:

    -4 vs. -1
    -2 vs. -3
    -6 vs. -5

    Matchday 3:

    -1 vs. -6
    -2 vs. -5
    -3 vs. -4

    3

    Matchday 1:

    -1 vs. -6
    -5 vs. -2
    -3 vs. -4

    Matchday 2:

    -2 vs. -1
    -6 vs. -3
    -4 vs. -5

    Matchday 3:

    -1 vs. -4
    -2 vs. -3
    -5 vs. -6

    Pots:

    U

    Qatar
    Belgium
    France
    Brazil
    Croatia
    England
    Portugal
    Uruguay

    V

    Switzerland
    Spain
    Denmark
    Argentina
    Colombia
    Chile
    Sweden
    Netherlands

    W

    Germany
    Mexico
    Italy
    Wales
    Poland
    Peru
    Senegal
    USA

    X

    Tunisia
    Iran
    Serbia
    Costa Rica
    Iceland
    Morocco
    Australia
    Nigeria

    Y

    Congo DR
    Japan
    Ghana
    South Korea
    Cameroon
    Egypt
    Ecuador
    Honduras

    Z

    Côte d'Ivoire
    Algeria
    Saudi Arabia
    Panama
    China PR
    Trinidad and Tobago
    Uzbekistan
    New Zealand
     
  9. Paul Calixte

    Paul Calixte Moderator
    Staff Member

    Orlando City SC
    Apr 30, 2009
    Miami, FL
    Club:
    Orlando City SC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Group A

    Qatar
    Netherlands
    Germany
    Costa Rica
    Egypt
    Saudi Arabia

    Group B

    Portugal
    Colombia
    Wales
    Tunisia
    Japan
    Algeria

    Group C

    Brazil
    Sweden
    Poland
    Australia
    Ecuador
    New Zealand

    Group D

    Uruguay
    Denmark
    Italy
    Iran
    Congo DR
    Cote d'Ivoire

    Group E

    France
    Spain
    USA
    Morocco
    South Korea
    Uzbekistan

    Group F

    Belgium
    Argentina
    Senegal
    Iceland
    Cameroon
    China PR

    Group G

    Croatia
    Chile
    Mexico
    Serbia
    Ghana
    Panama

    Group H

    England
    Switzerland
    Peru
    Nigeria
    Honduras
    Trinidad and Tobago
     
  10. Paul Calixte

    Paul Calixte Moderator
    Staff Member

    Orlando City SC
    Apr 30, 2009
    Miami, FL
    Club:
    Orlando City SC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    #3835 Paul Calixte, Jan 11, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
    Group Schedule:

    Matchday 1

    Qatar vs. Saudi Arabia (A)
    Egypt vs. Netherlands (A)
    Germany vs. Costa Rica (A)
    Portugal vs. Colombia (B)
    Wales vs. Algeria (B)
    Japan vs. Tunisia (B)
    Brazil vs. New Zealand (C)
    Ecuador vs. Sweden (C)
    Poland vs. Australia (C)
    Uruguay vs. Côte d'Ivoire (D)
    Congo DR vs. Denmark (D)
    Italy vs. Iran (D)
    France vs. Uzbekistan (E)
    South Korea vs. Spain (E)
    USA vs. Morocco (E)
    Belgium vs. China PR (F)
    Cameroon vs. Argentina (F)
    Senegal vs. Iceland (F)
    Croatia vs. Chile (G)
    Mexico vs. Panama (G)
    Ghana vs. Serbia (G)
    England vs. Trinidad and Tobago (H)
    Honduras vs. Switzerland (H)
    Peru vs. Nigeria (H)


    Matchday 2

    Netherlands vs. Qatar (A)
    Saudi Arabia vs. Germany (A)
    Costa Rica vs. Egypt (A)
    Tunisia vs. Portugal (B)
    Colombia vs. Wales (B)
    Algeria vs. Japan (B)
    Australia vs. Brazil (C)
    Sweden vs. Poland (C)
    New Zealand vs. Ecuador (C)
    Denmark vs. Uruguay (D)
    Côte d'Ivoire vs. Italy (D)
    Iran vs. Congo DR (D)
    Spain vs. France (E)
    Uzbekistan vs. USA (E)
    Morocco vs. South Korea (E)
    Argentina vs. Belgium (F)
    China PR vs. Senegal (F)
    Iceland vs. Cameroon (F)
    Serbia vs. Croatia (G)
    Chile vs. Mexico (G)
    Panama vs. Ghana (G)
    Nigeria vs. England (H)
    Switzerland vs. Peru (H)
    Trinidad and Tobago vs. Honduras (H)


    Matchday 3

    Qatar vs. Costa Rica (A)
    Netherlands vs. Germany (A)
    Egypt vs. Saudi Arabia (A)
    Portugal vs. Algeria (B)
    Colombia vs. Japan (B)
    Wales vs. Tunisia (B)
    Brazil vs. Sweden (C)
    Poland vs. New Zealand (C)
    Australia vs. Ecuador (C)
    Uruguay vs. Iran (D)
    Denmark vs. Italy (D)
    Congo DR vs. Côte d'Ivoire (D)
    France vs. Morocco (E)
    Spain vs. USA (E)
    South Korea vs. Uzbekistan (E)
    Belgium vs. Iceland (F)
    Argentina vs. Senegal (F)
    Cameroon vs. China PR (F)
    Croatia vs. Panama (G)
    Chile vs. Ghana (G)
    Mexico vs. Serbia (G)
    England vs. Switzerland (H)
    Peru vs. Trinidad and Tobago (H)
    Nigeria vs. Honduras (H)
     
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  11. BocaFan

    BocaFan Member+

    Aug 18, 2003
    Brooklyn, NY
    My concern is that the seeding will always be outdated since its based on results that are about a year prior to the WC itself (on average), not to mention the imperfections in seeding formulas.

    For instance, based on WC 2018 seeding, Croatia & Spain were in the same pot as Peru & Switzerland. Serbia same pot as Panama. France same pot as Poland.
     
  12. Gibraldo

    Gibraldo Member

    Nov 17, 2005
    Pfaffenhofen / Ilm
    Club:
    FK Crvena Zvezda Beograd
    Nat'l Team:
    Serbia
    ok, but this discussion is as old as seeding is and has nothing to do with various formats.

    an altrrnative might be to make 6 pots of 8 teams and not 3 pots of 16. So each pot is more consistent.

    the draw scenario could feature pre definitions like one pool of 3 will have teams from pot 1,4,5 and the second from 2,3,6...if you sum it up, both pools then have a strength value of 11.
     
  13. Paul Calixte

    Paul Calixte Moderator
    Staff Member

    Orlando City SC
    Apr 30, 2009
    Miami, FL
    Club:
    Orlando City SC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Now, I have to admit that a clear drawback of my setup is the third seeds potentially getting an easier schedule than the second seeds (see: Sweden's fixtures compared to Poland's, although that has partly to do with Ecuador having a surprisingly low ranking right now). Perhaps there is a better schedule template to fix that...but even failing that, 1) the second and third seed get to play each other directly, and 2) it's still better than the second seed potentially sitting out the last matchday and watching as the teams on the field screw them over 1982-style.
     
  14. BocaFan

    BocaFan Member+

    Aug 18, 2003
    Brooklyn, NY
    The discussion may be old, but I think it draws more attention to the seeding if teams in the same group are playing different opponents from the same pot.
     
  15. Hayaka

    Hayaka Member+

    Jun 21, 2009
    SF North Bay
    Club:
    --other--
    Nat'l Team:
    Denmark
    Any system that doesn't have simultaneous playing of matches on the final match day isn't going to work. I think we know that already.
     
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  16. Gibraldo

    Gibraldo Member

    Nov 17, 2005
    Pfaffenhofen / Ilm
    Club:
    FK Crvena Zvezda Beograd
    Nat'l Team:
    Serbia
    i remember FIFA was setting up a catalogue of requirements for a new format and one was that the group phase should be enriched by clashes between top nations.

    astonishingly, with the chosen format by FIFA, that will never be the case as there will at best be team ranked 1 and team ranked 17 in a group of 3.

    but i agree for my format, subpots x1 (fifa rank 1 to 8) and x2 (rank 9 to 16) make sense to avoid the top 8 teams of the ranking been drawn together in a group of 6. pots y and z may be subsplitted accordingly.
     
  17. Blondo

    Blondo Member+

    Sep 21, 2013
    There are currently over 30 teams from UEFA in the top 48 of the ranking. FIFA only allocated 16 berths to UEFA though for a 48 team World Cup + UEFA teams won't have to face each other in the group phase. Other confeds already enjoyed this small benefit and once the World Cup is expanded to 48 teams so will teams from UEFA.

    Shouldn't your format include a rule that teams from the same confed won't face each other in the groups? In your example you have several 3 team pools with teams from the same confed (e.g. B2 Portugal & Poland, C2 Spain & Serbia, ...). UEFA was already shorthanded, according to FIFA's own ranking it should roughly be doubled, but at least UEFA teams would no longer have to face the top teams from its own confed.

    "The best and most profitable way to expand the World Cup is a 48-team tournament of 16 three-team groups, according to FIFA's in-house research which accepts the current 32-nation format produces the highest quality soccer. The "absolute quality" of soccerwith high-ranked teams playing each other most often—is achieved by the 32-team format being used in Russia and at the 2022 event in Qatar. FIFA said it made 10,000 tournament simulations to reach that conclusion.

    Maybe it had to do with that quote but if you have a link to FIFA's requirements for a new format I'd be interested. FIFA's bottomline is by far the most important requirement though and it sounds like FIFA's research concluded the 16x3 format is more lucrative.
     
  18. Paul Calixte

    Paul Calixte Moderator
    Staff Member

    Orlando City SC
    Apr 30, 2009
    Miami, FL
    Club:
    Orlando City SC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    And after running my demo, I'm not 100% certain that doing so is necessarily better. Allowing for those pots to remain as they are may have avoided the issue I noted with third seeds getting easier schedules than second seeds...at the cost of potentially more imbalanced groups.
     
  19. Gibraldo

    Gibraldo Member

    Nov 17, 2005
    Pfaffenhofen / Ilm
    Club:
    FK Crvena Zvezda Beograd
    Nat'l Team:
    Serbia
    Firstly, I assumed that of course the first ranked teams are qualified. Of course I wouldn't change the allocation of slots to confederations and there will be gaps in the field, like nowadays and the cycles before. My topic was not to revolutionize berth allocations. I just simplyfied to explain the core of my proposal.

    Also you might be right, that a 32 team world cup is better than a 48 team world cup, but my introduction started based on the discussions at FIFA at the moment to enhance the field already for 2022. So that is the point where my posts are about. That my 48-team-format is better than the one that FIFA has already decided on.

    Btw. I think the 6 groups with 4 teams format with a round of 16 is better than the 32 team format and I know my opinion might cause upset here, but to me, the world cups between 86 and 94 were the best in football history and you can even count 82 in, though the format has been slightly different.

    What I really like about the first 24 team variation is the spread of possible encounters after the group phase, more or less as if there is an additional draw. It guarantees, that every team has the possibility and challenge of playing each other team at the quarter final of the world cup. With the current format, only half of the field is a possible matchup for a team at the quarter final. And as always the same groups have two cross-over round-of-16 matches, everything is more or less predictable, on who you might encounter in the next round. (I would have a schedule at hand, that enhances the spread here, btw.)

    But as it is, the path is more or less laid already from the day of the final draw, as long as upsets do not occur.
     
  20. Blondo

    Blondo Member+

    Sep 21, 2013
    Your 48 team format is what I looked at and I asked you: "Shouldn't your format include a rule that teams from the same confed won't face each other in the groups?" In your tweet I saw several 3 team pools with teams from the same confed (e.g. B2 Portugal & Poland, C2 Spain & Serbia, ...). UEFA teams should be kept apart (in the group phase) which you didn't do in your 48 team format.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/30/sports/soccer/world-cup-2026-fifa-expansion.html

    The small increase in Europe’s allotment is sure to disappoint fans and federations there, but it is in line with what Aleksander Ceferin, the president of UEFA, Europe’s governing body of soccer, had demanded for the continent. In an interview with The New York Times in February, Ceferin said that he was more concerned with keeping European teams apart in the early rounds of the expanded tournament.

    “Two or three of our member nations suggested to me that we ask for 20 or 24 teams, and if we have to settle for 16, then O.K., but I do not want to push it,” Ceferin said. “I said that we should be realistic. To say that we want half the teams at the World Cup would look arrogant to me.”

    “Sixteen teams and each European team in a different group is the red line,” he added. “That is what we will insist on. The others are still discussing. That will happen, or we will make things quite complicated.

    On Thursday, Ceferin, a member of the FIFA committee that came up with the recommendations, pronounced UEFA “satisfied” with the plan.


    The other point, about top nations facing each other being a requirement for a new format, can you provide a link to FIFA's catalogue of requirements for a new format? Read FIFA's quote, the one from my previous post, again. In the 32 team format the top teams play each other most often yet as the 48 team format is more lucrative FIFA sacrificed this "requirement" for their bottomline. Also, they researched a handful of formats for the 48 team World Cup and went with the most profitable one, that's the main requirement... profit.
     
  21. Gibraldo

    Gibraldo Member

    Nov 17, 2005
    Pfaffenhofen / Ilm
    Club:
    FK Crvena Zvezda Beograd
    Nat'l Team:
    Serbia
    I think 16 is a favorable number of european contenders. That would allow to have exactly 2 europeans in each group of six contenders and I dont see a problrm in letting them play each other in 1 of the 9 group matches. That is not inflationary.

    I do not recognize the link where it has been stated that, FIFA thinks, it would be could to have the bigs teams in a group. I remember the reason given was not to have too many oneside 1st round matches with most of the groups only having matches wirh the story of david vs. goliath written all above them.

    Nevertheless, I myself rather the benefits. it is not all big teams facing each other, it is 1 group match out of 9 being a match between 2 teams from the top 16 of the seedlist. nothing too much to ask for, if you ask me.

    Look at WC 2018 group phase. would you like to renounce early matches like spain v portugal, or argentina v croatia in the future? I am sure a FIFA won't and I do neither but with FIFA's choice of a 48 team format, you have exactly that. And i still dont see any unfairness for anyone, if everyone plays exactly 1 team from each the 1st to 16th position, the 17th to 32th position and the last third of the seedlist.
     
  22. Paul Calixte

    Paul Calixte Moderator
    Staff Member

    Orlando City SC
    Apr 30, 2009
    Miami, FL
    Club:
    Orlando City SC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Going back to the current schedule under consideration for 2026 and the obvious concern that we all have about the teams on the last group matchday settling for biscotti:

    w3yjeu7dadt5erw26wmu (dragged).jpg

    It would help if the last games in the groups whose teams will face each other in next round were played simultaneously, e.g. the last games in Groups A and B at the same time. That way, the teams involved would have to keep one eye on their own group table and the other on developments in the adjacent group, with concerns over the potential R32 matchup distracting them from speculating with a mutually beneficial score.
     
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  23. Gibraldo

    Gibraldo Member

    Nov 17, 2005
    Pfaffenhofen / Ilm
    Club:
    FK Crvena Zvezda Beograd
    Nat'l Team:
    Serbia
    they can save additional days, by having only 3 matchdays for the round of 16, similar to what has happened at Euro 2016.

    there can also by days saved, by having both semi finals on one day, all QF on one day (which I cannot believe they are doing) and 3rd Place match as an opener on the same day as the final.

    What your example schedule also shows is, that there might often be 8(!!) rest days for a team, if it has a bye on the 3rd matchday of the group phase but is reaching the round of 32 match (example: A2). Come on, what should they do within a break of 8 days? They will totally loose form, motivation and composure.

    And isn't it funny to play the 2nd group match and having to wait 4 days on a hot seed until your know, you can go home?

    This system ain't gonna work. There will be sooo much critizism all around the world.
     
  24. BocaFan

    BocaFan Member+

    Aug 18, 2003
    Brooklyn, NY
    Agreed. The schedule looks terrible, not that much can be done to improve it ( other than restructuring with 12 groups of 4).

    I'm not sure what's worse: playing 2 matches right-away and then not playing again for 8 days and entering the KO stage match cold (while also being at a disadvantage of not playing on the final day of the group-stage), OR having no game until 7-8 days into the tournament and having to play your first match against a team that has already played a match.

    Also since playing 2 games in 4 days is a regular occurrence, I hope they will divide the schedule/teams geographically like they did in 2002. Except might have to divide into 3 regions: Mexico, West Canada/US, East Canada/US.
     
  25. Paul Calixte

    Paul Calixte Moderator
    Staff Member

    Orlando City SC
    Apr 30, 2009
    Miami, FL
    Club:
    Orlando City SC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Y'all complaining about an eight-day break when in the group stage, Canada, Mexico and the US would go 9, 10 and 11 days (respectively) between their group matches! :eek:

    I could just see a snarky SportsCenter anchor now: "By the way, in case you forgot, the US are playing in this World Cup too!"
     

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