Infantino Hails France 2019 Women’s World Cup, Plans Tournament Expansion

Channels Television  
Updated July 5, 2019
FIFA president Gianni Infantino speaks during the inauguration of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) new headquarters in Kuala Lumpur on October 30, 2018.
Mohd RASFAN / AFP

 

FIFA President Gianni Infantino hailed France 2019 as “the best women’s World Cup ever” on Friday as he set out radical plans for the future of the women’s game, including expanding the tournament to 32 teams in 2023.

Speaking at a press conference in Lyon, where the World Cup concludes on Sunday as holders the United States and the Netherlands meet in the final, Infantino said the tournament had been “phenomenal” and “incredible”.

“There was a before and there will be an after the World Cup but it is up to us to seize the opportunity and do something about it,” added Infantino, who last month was re-elected for a second four-year term.

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Rolling out a series of proposals for the development of the women’s game, Infantino said he would try to expand the competition in time for the next tournament in four years.

“I think we should increase the number of participants from 24 to 32,” he said.

“The tricky thing is that we have a World Cup for which we just started a bidding process based on 24 teams, so there we need to act more quickly and discuss it as a matter of urgency, in which case we should reopen the bidding process.”

AFP