FIFA president Gianni Infantino wants 48 teams to play World Cup

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Bengaluru, Oct 4: FIFA president Gianni Infantino has recently suggested that he has proposed to expand the FIFA World Cup to 48 teams.

According to the new plan of the Italian president, before the group stages begin, 16 knockout matches will be played which means 16 teams will be eliminated before the group stages resume.

File photo: Gianni Infantino

Before his election, Infantino had promised that he would expand the tournament to 40 teams to make it even more exciting.

Colombian media quoted the president: "These are ideas to find the best solution, we will debate them this month and we will decide everything by 2017. They are ideas which we put forward to see which one is the best."

Infantino further explained his plan saying 16 seeded teams will automatically progress to the group stages and the other 32 teams will have to play the knockout games.

Once the knockout stage is over the 16 winners will progress and join those seeded teams in the group matches.

Though the plan is yet to be materialised, some section of the football fraternity are not happy with the expansion process.

World Cup winning Germany manager Joachim Leow recently, speaking to Welt am Sonntag newspaper, said: "I don't think its a good idea to dilute the sporting value (of the tournament)."

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