Europe 1 with AFP 18:51 p.m., March 27, 2023

FIFA and the European Club Association renewed their confidence in each other on Monday. The two organisations have agreed on a new system with more international matches during the season, accompanied by higher compensation for clubs.

A busier international calendar, but more money for clubs: FIFA on Monday renewed until 2030 its agreement with the powerful European Club Association (ECA), an important step in expanding its competitions. Signed at the 29th ECA General Assembly in Budapest, the protocol "strengthens the relationship" between the two organisations, "bringing long-term stability to squad and club football", the two organisations welcome.

"Today is a historic day for football clubs of Europe and around the world." - ECA Chairman, Nasser Al-Khelaïfi

ECA signs renewed Memorandum of Understanding with FIFA until 2030, full statement here:

— ECA (@ECAEurope) March 27, 2023

Concretely, the clubs that make their internationals available will see the compensation of FIFA jump to $ 355 million (329 million euros) from the 2026 World Cup, the first to increase from 32 to 48 caps, against $ 209 million (193 million euros) for the 2018 and 2022 editions. In return, European clubs, which employ almost all the best players on the planet, undertake to "comply until 2030 with the international calendar of matches", approved by the FIFA executive on March 14.

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Quadrennial Club World Cup

This support promises to be crucial for the boss of world football, Gianni Infantino, re-elected on March 16 without opposition until 2027, and who plans to extend FIFA's grip on both national football and club football. In addition to the extension of the men's World Cup to 48 teams, he plans to introduce a quadrennial "Club World Cup" with 32 teams from 2025, which will be added to an annual game between the winner of the Champions League and that of an intercontinental mini-tournament.

But if this new club competition displeases leagues like UEFA, which deplore the saturation of the calendar and the increased risk of injury, the ECA gave Monday its "support", as well as the creation of a future Women's Club World Cup. The agreement signed in Budapest "recognises the central role of clubs in world football and ensures that they are properly represented in decision-making processes on issues that concern them," said Nasser Al-Khelaïfi, head of ECA, Paris SG and media group BeIN.

The Qatari leader also announced that FIFA and ECA would "deepen their working relationship" on the new Club World Cup, "including the sporting and commercial aspects of the 2025 edition" and the "rights management" of the following editions, such as the co-management by the ECA and UEFA of European club competitions.