FIFA announced details regarding the new format for the Club World Cup on Sunday, saying the first edition will take place in 2025 and feature European heavyweights Real Madrid and Manchester City.
The tournament will take place from June 15 to July 13 in the United States and bring together 32 teams, spread across eight groups with two sides progressing from each pool to a last 16 knockout round.
“Clubs play a fundamental role in world football, and the FIFA Club World Cup 2025 will be a major milestone in providing clubs from all confederations with a fitting stage on which to shine at the highest level of the game,” said FIFA president Gianni Infantino.
“This will be an open competition based on sporting merit that will play a key role as part of our efforts to make football truly global.”
UEFA (Europe) will boast 12 teams and CONMEBOL (South America) six, whilst CAF (Africa), AFC (Asia) and CONCACAF (North America) will all have four spots and OFC (Oceania) one.
Four European places have been given to the winners of the Champions League dating back to 2021, namely Chelsea, Real Madrid and Manchester City, as well as the eventual victors of the 2024 campaign.
A further five clubs from the continent have already qualified for the 2025 tournament thanks to their UEFA ranking: Paris Saint-Germain, Bayern Munich, Inter Milan, Porto and Benfica.
In the current edition of FIFA’s showpiece club event, Copa Libertadores winners Fluminense play Al Ahly of Egypt on Monday, whilst Champions League victors Manchester City face Urawa Reds the following day in the semi-finals.
source : firstpost.com