FIFA’s governor council on Tuesday, January 10, approved an expansion of the World Cup to 48 teams in 2026.
“The FIFA Council unanimously decided on a 48-team #WorldCup as of 2026: 16 groups of 3 teams,” a tweet from FIFA’s official account said.
This is the first time since the 1998 World Cup that changes have been made to the make-up of the tournament, with the 2026 competition set to feature 16 groups of three.
The decision was taken with a format of 16 groups of three nations.
FIFA president Infantino had preferred option for change was for a 2026 competition featuring the 16 groups followed by a 32-team knockout round, increasing the number of games from 64 to 80 but remaining inside a 32-day schedule.