Arsene Wenger wants the FIFA World Cup to take place every TWO years from 2028 with mandatory rest periods to protect players… claims fans want ‘high stakes’ competitions and insists there is NO financial incentive for his plan
- Arsene Wenger called for the FIFA World Cup to be held every two years
- Wenger is FIFA Global Head of Development and said it could happen from 2028
- Wenger, 71, said fans want “high-stakes, easy-to-understand matches”
Arsene Wenger has called for a major overhaul of international football, with the FIFA World Cup to take place every two years from 2028.
The former Arsenal manager, who is now FIFA’s Head of Global Development, has been talking for some time about his desire to change the world football calendar and has now revealed how he believes the new system could work.
Wenger’s proposals aim to reduce the number of international matches on the calendar, and he has suggested that there be a single period in each year for international qualifiers.
Arsene Wenger (left), pictured with Jurgen Klopp, calls up for the World Cup every two years
Wenger proposed one qualifying period in one year, and mandatory rest for players
“The principle would be to organize a group of qualifiers every year and at the end of the season a major league, a World Cup or a continental championship,” Wenger told L’Equipe in an interview published Friday.
“Between the two qualifying windows, the player would stay with his club for the whole year.”
Wenger wants his proposals to take effect in 2028, two years after the 2026 World Cup in North America and Mexico. The 71-year-old said a clearer calendar with fewer congestion means less travel for players.
“There should be less of a mix in the calendar between periods of club football and periods of international football, and therefore less transcontinental travel for the players, for example,” he said.
In May, FIFA Congress approved a study to look at moving the World Cup to every two years
FIFA president Gianni Infantino warned in May about financial differences in world football
“There are no more matches for the players and there is a mandatory rest after the final phase, at least 25 days.”
FIFA Congress voted 166 to 22 back in May to examine a proposal to host the World Cup every two years after FIFA president Gianni Infantino expressed concern about “financial and sporting inequality” in the United States. global game – and the dominance of European football.
How Wenger’s plans will be received by UEFA and CONMEBOL, which will host the European Championship and Copa America respectively, remains to be seen.
He emphasized in the interview that there is “no financial intention behind” his radical rethink, despite his position at FIFA.
Wenger, who is FIFA Global Head of Development, said his plans have “no financial intent.”
But Wenger thinks the current global football landscape is too cluttered and believes fans want a simpler experience with more meaningful matches.
“What people want these days is high-stakes leagues that are easy to understand,” he said.
“It is a global project, for men’s football, but also for women’s football and youth leagues,” he added.
World Cups are FIFA’s main source of revenue, making up the lion’s share of the £4.5 billion in revenue FIFA expects to earn in its current four-year financial cycle, ending with the competition in Qatar in 2022.
By contrast, UEFA’s revenues totaled £2.6bn in 2019-20 alone and over £10bn over the four-year period.