An international consortium of investors from China, Japan, Saudi Arabia, the US and the United Arab Emirates has a plan to launch an international club championship for FIFA, as revealed by The Financial Times yesterday.
The proposal would be an expansion of the “Club World Cup” which is currently played by seven teams from around the world. If this proposal is successful, the tournament would be played every four years by the top 24 club teams worldwide.
There was also talk of a new international league competition for national teams.
The Financial Times could not find the identities of the investors involved but suspected that the consortium was brought together by a UK group called Centricus.
It is reported that FIFA would have a 51% stake in a joint venture with the consortium, with the investors guaranteeing revenues of at least $25bn.
This news comes after Gianni Infantino, FIFA’s president, said last month that a group of investors was willing to acquire an expanded version of the Club World Cup, but he did not reveal their identities.
His comments were first reported by the New York Times, with further details from the Associated Press.
This newly expanded club competition would be likely to run into opposition from groups such as UEFA, who could see it as eating into their lucrative Champions League competition.