Infantino: Euro Super Lge players could face Federation Internationale de Football Association bans

Rex Christensen
November 9, 2018

Speaking in London on Wednesday, Infantino suggested that if there were to be some type of breakaway league, those players wouldn't be eligible to play in the FIFA World Cup and other important competitions.

European Leagues - an organisation that acts on matters of common interest regarding clubs from the 32 professional leagues it represents - has already spoken out against the idea of a "closed and franchised style" competition.

The reports claimed that several of the biggest clubs around Europe were planning to break away from their domestic leagues to form a "super league" that would see the likes of Bayern Munich, Juventus and Real Madrid compete against one another week in week out. If there are players who don't play organised football then that encompasses everything - national leagues, confederation competitions, the Euros and the World Cup.

Infantino said it was Fifa's duty to "protect football". "That would be the general approach we would follow, but of course lawyers can debate this for a long time".

Threats of a breakaway league have reared up periodically for a number of years, and Infantino said there would be a heavy price to pay for players taking part. Infantino said he expects a decision in March when he chairs a Fifa Council meeting in Miami.

Addressing the claims, Infantino said: "We were doing our job and saved the system and we saved European club football".

Infantino also said that the 2022 World Cup must be played in just 28 days even if it is expanded to 48 teams. "People are still quite reasonable", Infantino said.

"We worked with the information we had at the time".

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Accommodating another 16 teams would vastly complicate Qatar's task in preparing for the World Cup, which was awarded to the tiny desert state in 2010.

Federation Internationale de Football Association will decide in March whether to add 16 teams in 2022 but Infantino said the chances of an expansion were "certainly small" because of the scheduling issues and the fact that host Qatar would need help from neighboring countries to stage games.

"I was positive about it from the beginning because I think if we can increase the number of teams [to 48] it is good for football", he said, according to the BBC.

The Club World Cup, now an annual tournament with seven teams, could become a four-yearly event featuring 24 clubs instead.

"It will be a very, very hard challenge to do it only in Qatar".

"We are in discussions with Qatar", Infantino said. There are documents. But it is our responsibility to find ways for football to be united. "Certainly small but what is wrong in discussing it?"

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