Sepp Blatter admits ‘mistake’ in awarding Qatar the World Cup

Sepp Blatter has admitted the decision to award the World Cup to Qatar when he was FIFA president was a “mistake”. The build-up to this year’s World Cup has been dogged by concerns about the suffering of low-paid migrant workers to build the infrastructure in the tiny Gulf nation and discriminatory laws that criminalise same-sex relations.

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FIFA approves 26 man squads for World Cup

FIFA has decided to increase the size of the squads as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and the unusual timing of the tournament. National teams will be allowed to include a maximum of 26 players in their final squads for the World Cup this year. Previously, coaches were allowed to bring 23 players along to each tournament.

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FIFA 2022 World Cup draw pits Germany against Spain

Footballing powerhouses Germany and Spain will face each other in the group stages of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar later this year as the group stage draw was held this evening. Elsewhere England will face the USA and could potentially face Wales or Scotland depending on how their playoff matches finish.

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Courtois hits out at football governing bodies over rising number of games

Belgium goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois has accused football authorities of prioritising revenue over player welfare in a damning assessment of the global football calendar. Courtois, 29, was speaking after his country lost 2-1 against Italy in UEFA’s Nations League third-place play-off on Sunday – a match he described as “pointless” in the build-up.

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FIFA to discuss biennial World Cup next week

Fifa will hold an online summit with its member associations on 30 September to discuss the international men’s and women’s calendar. A World Cup every two years rather than four is part of Fifa’s plans. The current match calendar for the women’s game runs to the end of 2023, while the men’s expires in 2024.

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