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Africa backing 2022 Qatar World Cup expansion

9:27 PM IST 15/03/19
Ahmad Ahmad, Caf President
Part of the agenda at the ongoing Fifa Council meeting is the feasibility of expanding the 2022 World Cup from 32 teams to 48

Caf has thrown its weight behind the possibility of increasing the number of teams to participate at the 2022 Fifa World Cup.

With the new development having been set to be implemented during the 2026 World Cup, Fifa are now mulling on having the idea effected at the 2022 edition to be staged in Qatar.

The world football's governing body will deliberate on the matter at a Council meeting in Miami on Friday.

Caf vice-president Amaju Pinnick told BBC Sport that Caf fully supports the expansion of the quadrennial tournament earlier than originally planned, spelling out how Africa would possibly benefit from the development.

“Caf will definitely support the vision of (Fifa president) Gianni Infantino if he wants this,” Pinnick said. 

"Why wait until 2026 if we can achieve it now? If you do it now, there will be more money and more participating teams.

"In Africa we are going to have another 4.5 (places), which makes more sense to us - rather than just going with five nations. That's why Africa will always support Infantino.”

The expansion could however provide Qatar with logistical challenges, leaving them needing to co-host the tournament.

And with Qatar’s diplomatic relations with other Gulf states like Bahrain, United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia souring, Oman and Kuwait could be the possible co-staging candidates if the idea sails through.