ANOC decides at its General Assembly whether to issue a statement of opposition to FIFA’s project to hold soccer World Cups every two years

Acting president Robin Mitchell considers that the proposal launched by Gianni Infantino “will congest the world sports calendar and the different competitions, and will have a negative effect on the welfare of footballers.”

Gianni Infantino /  EFE/EPA/Koen van Weel/Pool
Gianni Infantino / EFE/EPA/Koen van Weel/Pool

CRETE (GREECE) - The president of the Association of National Olympic Committees of Africa (ANOCA), Mustapha Berraf, today proposed that the Association of National Olympic Committees (ANOC) issues a stament opposing FIFA’s proposal to hold men’s World Cups every two years “because of the serious consequences that this could have on other sports”.

“It is a problem that challenges us all, because this proposal may causing serious consequences such as leaving other sports in the background and aggravating the gender gap that already exists,” said Berraf, at the XXV ANOC General Assembly being held on the Greek island of Crete.

“Footballers are not robots. This decision only aims to make money and is going to hinder the effort of the athletes and harm athletes’ health. I ask the president to issue a statement of opposition to this project that threatens to be harmful to other sports,” Berraf added.

Minutes earlier, ANOC’s acting president, Robin Mitchell, had expressed himself in similar terms, considering that the proposal launched by Gianni Infantino “will congest the world sports calendar and the different competitions, and will have a negative effect on the welfare of footballers.”

Mitchell regretted the “lack of solidarity and respect for the sport” shown by FIFA in not having consulted with the International Olympic Committee on its proposal to hold men’s World Cups every two years.

The ANOC General Assembly must now decide whether to approve the proposed the statement, the content of which has not yet been made public.