Football Federation Australia Chief Executive David Gallop said the FIFA Council’s unanimous decision to expand the number of countries contesting the FIFA World Cup Finals recognised the growth of the game outside of Europe and South America and the positive impact that being a part of the tournament has on local players and fans.
“Australia is part of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) where the most significant growth and investment is occurring and we expect this trend to continue over the coming years leading up to the World Cup expansion,” Mr Gallop said.
“As the quality of Asian football continues to improve, AFC Member Associations will justifiably deserve greater representation at the FIFA World Cup.”
Gallop said FFA would remain closely engaged through the AFC in discussions regarding the allocations of the extra slots and other details around how the 2026 tournament will operate.
“In the meantime we will stay focussed on achieving qualification for the Socceroos for next year’s World Cup in Russia and we hope all Australians will get behind the team for their final qualifying matches.”