Ahead of the 2022 World Cup, FIFA made major waves in the international football landscape by revealing a plan to host the World Cup every two years, which would make the tournament a deal every two years instead of all. the fourth. However, FIFA’s plan is not without opposition, including from another international sports organization.
In a statement released on Saturday, the International Olympic Committee announced that it supported calls for a “wider consultation” on the FIFA World Cup biennium, citing reservations and concerns stemming from three main factors.
The IOC argued that increasing the frequency and timing of the World Cup “would compromise the diversity and development of sports other than football”, namely several Olympic sports such as tennis, cycling, golf and gymnastics as well as Formula 1. The IOC also suggested that increasing the number of men’s football events would create challenges for gender equality in the promotion of women’s football, as well as pressure on physical health. and mentality of the players of the more frequent World Cups.
“The IOC shares these concerns and supports the calls of football players, international sports federations and organizers of major events for a wider consultation, including with athlete representatives, which has obviously not taken place,” can we read in the press release of the organization.
FIFA’s biennial plan has become a major point of contention not only with other sports organizations, but also with football clubs and federations. According to an Associated Press reportThe European Club Association criticized FIFA for its lack of commitment to the new international match schedule from 2024, criticizing FIFA’s launch of public relations campaigns linked to the plan as “seeking apparently to accelerate BMI reforms, in particular the introduction of a biennial World Cup program. “
Plans to double the frequency of the World Cup have been gaining momentum since May, when the Saudi Arabian federation proposed to the FIFA congress to consider biennial World Cups.