IOC voices concern over  Fifa’s biennial World Cup plan


GENEVA—The International Olympic Committee (IOC) said on Saturday it has “concerns” about Fifa’s push for soccer World Cups every two years.

Though IOC President Thomas Bach said last month “we will not interfere in this discussion,” his organization stepped in on Saturday after meeting in Athens to detail objections it shared with soccer stakeholders.

Clashes in the schedule with other sports, the men’s World Cup overshadowing women’s editions of the tournament, and “a further massive strain” on athlete welfare were all cited in an IOC statement after an executive board meeting.

The IOC did not refer to potential future World Cup-Olympics clashes—potentially as soon as 2028 when the Summer Games are hosted by Los Angeles—in its statement.

The IOC did criticize Fifa’s tactics in promoting the biennial World Cup project by noting a wider consultation across soccer “has obviously not taken place.”

Fifa revealed its detailed plan last month, after meeting with retired players, to redraft the calendar of international soccer competitions with biennial World Cups for men and women at the heart.

The proposal strongly backed by Fifa president Gianni Infantino was announced before formally consulting member federations in the World Cup strongholds of Europe and South America.

Image courtesy of AP

Read full article on BusinessMirror