Zurich - The 2022 World Cup will remain a 32 team competition with no change
to the share between the regional confederations, FIFA president Sepp
Blatter said on Saturday after talks between football chiefs.
Europe and South America had feared an attempt to cut their places, but Blatter said: "there is no change."
decision taken by FIFA's executive committee means that Europe will
still have 13 places at the Qatar tournament and Africa five.
and South America each get four places and a chance at a playoff. North
and Central America get three places and a playoff chance while the
Oceania winner enters a playoff.
Qatar will qualify automatically as the hosts.
chief Michel Platini had said ahead of the meeting that remaining at 13
places was a "red line" for the European confederation.
Prince Ali bin al Hussein, who challenged Blatter for the FIFA presidency, had proposed increasing the number of teams.
But Blatter said on Friday that the World Cup should "not be touched."
FIFA executive also "confirmed" that the same continent cannot hold the
World Cup twice in a row, which definitively ruled out a Chinese bid
"In accordance with the FIFA Statutes ... member
associations from the Asian Football Confederation would not be able to
bid for 2026," said a FIFA statement.
China had expressed an
interest in 2026 but its football leaders said the rule made a bid
unlikely as Qatar will host the 2022 edition.
Wang Jianlin, one of
China's richest men, who has a stake in Atletico Madrid and also owns
the Infront sports promotion agency met with Blatter at the FIFA
congress in Zurich this week.