FIFA has called for the rescheduling of the Club World Cup in the US due to concerns over player welfare and rights

MANCHESTER, England (AP) — FIFA has been told to adjust its timing Extended Club World Cup It was still a year before the tournament was held in the United States.

The world players’ association FIFPRO and the World Leagues Association are calling for reform of the international competition calendar controlled by football’s governing body.

In a letter obtained by The Associated Press on Thursday, FIFA accused FIFA of pushing players „beyond their limits, with significant injury risks” by expanding its tournaments.

FIFPRO and the WLA say this affects the welfare of players and their „fundamental rights”.

A A 32-team World Cup for clubs FIFA’s answer to the dominance of the Champions League and the English Premier League is one of the world’s most popular and lucrative sporting competitions. But this has raised concerns about growing player demands A crowded tournament calendarThis includes an expansion of the World Cup to 48 teams from 2026.

The new edition of the Club World Cup is scheduled for June 15 to July 13 next year and will mark three consecutive major tournaments during the regular holiday, given that this summer and the next World Cup will host the European Championship and Copa America. is in 2026.

FIFA had previously said the dates would be „aligned in harmony with the international competition calendar” to ensure adequate rest for players ahead of the start of domestic leagues.

But FIFPRO and the WLA are calling for the international calendar to be „immediately revised”.

As well as rescheduling the Club World Cup, they want to reopen discussions on release periods for players from 2024-30 and review the „Intercontinental Cup”, a replacement for the old Club World Cup, a shorter format event. Staged at the end of the year.

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The letter warns of legal action against FIFA if the governing body does not comply.

„Leagues and players cannot be expected to 'accommodate’ FIFA’s decisions driven by FIFA’s business strategy. We have reached a point where we need to address this situation immediately from a practical and substantive perspective,” the letter said.

FIFPRO is very concerned about the physical and mental health of players to meet the increasing demands.

Last season, Manchester United And Portugal midfielder Bruno Fernandes made 70 appearances for club and country, including 20 in a row as a result of being held in the middle of the World Cup campaign in Qatar.

Manchester City and Spain midfielder Rodri played in 10 different matches.

There are claims that such demands lead to burnouts, injuries and premature termination of careers.

Concerns are unlikely to ease as European soccer’s governing body UEFA changes the Champions League format with two extra games from next season. The European Championship has expanded in recent years.

A report from FIFPRO last year It analyzed the impact of what it described as „severe calendar congestion”. 43% of World Cup players surveyed said they experienced „excessive or increased mental fatigue”.

The Associated Press has contacted FIFA for comment.

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There is James Robson https://twitter.com/jamesalanrobson

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AP Football: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer

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