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World Cup could expand to 40 nations – Infantino

SoccerNews in World Cup 2 Jul 2016

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The World Cup could be expanded to enable 40 countries to take part in the competition, FIFA president Gianni Infantino says.

Infantino believes the involvement of more nations would further football development around the world, citing the expansion of the Copa America and European Championship as successful examples.

UEFA’s continental competitions has grown to 24 teams for the first time, with Wales reaching the semi-finals and Iceland through to the quarter-finals, while the Copa America Centenario featured 16 teams instead of the usual 12.

“For the development of football, it is therefore very important that we may involve more countries and regions,” Infantino told Bild.

“First we will speak with all those involved: the players, the clubs, the leagues, associations and our partners. Then we will see the overwhelming opinion of all.”

Infantino claimed the expansion of Euro 2016 has been particularly good for the quality of football at the event, as well as the level of competition.

“The games were almost all very competitive,” Infantino said. “In the groups we went to the end, everything was very balanced.

“The European Championship and the Copa America have shown that the level of world football is very high and the World Cup tolerates the participation of 40 teams also, because the World Cup is more than a competition, it is a social event.”

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