FIFA wants World Cup tourney every 2 years

PARIS, 21 Dec 2021:

Switching the FIFA World Cup to every two years would increase gross domestic product by US$180 billion over a 16-year cycle and create nearly two million additional jobs, according to a FIFA report released yesterday.

A biennial competition would also create an extra US$4.4 billion in revenues over a four-year period, the report led by OpenEconomics added.

The study, which assessed the financial implications of holding a 48-team World Cup every two years instead of four years, also showed that revenues from ticket sales would increase from US$7 billion to US$11.4 billion.

Although local and global soccer competitions may be perceived as competitive products, the historical evolution of the revenues of the most relevant clubs shows no apparent rivalry between the two, according to the study.

Revenues generated by the top five European leagues and the UEFA Champions League have steadily increased year on year, regardless of whether major tournaments like the World Cup or European Championships overlap.

Therefore, the scheduling of competitions relevant to national teams would not be detrimental to the revenues generated by the most important national and international club competitions, the study added.

Empirical data collected over the last decade show that the percentage growth in revenues of the top five European leagues was higher during seasons in which a major national team final tournament was scheduled compared to when they were not held (42% vs. 26%).

FIFA said the results of the new revenue stream would be distributed to the new ‘Member Associations Solidarity Fund’ in which each national federation would be allocated US$16 million in a four-year period. Extra funds would be dedicated to the FIFA Forward Program for development projects, it added.

Increasing the global distribution of FIFA funds would significantly contribute to reducing the income gap between the developed and less developed football markets, given that FIFA is the only governing body that distributes its income worldwide.