Gianni Infantino rebuilds the Fifa government according to his taste – and relies on many old acquaintances. The most important topic at the meeting in Zurich: How many teams are allowed to participate in the World Cup?
In Zurich, the new Fifa government meets for the second time this Thursday. Although five of the 37 posts on the board are still vacant, the course is set for the future. The men’s world championship will be extended from 2026, there is little doubt. Whether it will be 40 national teams, as Gianni Infantino promised his voters at the beginning of the year, or even 48, as the Fifa President recently proposed, is still open. The decision about this is not taken until January 2017, but the topic is omnipresent in Zurich.
While his suspended predecessor, Joseph Blatter, who is prosecuted by a criminal case of the Swiss Federal Prosecutor, only a portrait photo in the gallery of the Home of Fifa and a fountain with his name in the front yard of the headquarters, Infantino has the Council of the World Federation already after its taste redesigned.
In the European association Uefa, where Infantino was director and secretary general, he supported the enthronement of Aleksander Ceferin as president. Dubois officials such as Russia’s sports minister, Witali Mutko, or the influential and wealthy Cypriot Marios Lefkaritis, who are members of the Fifa Council as a European representative, are sponsored by Infantino.