FIFA Confirms 9 Slots for Africa at 2026 World Cup
The number of seats that are guaranteed for Africa has increased from five to nine, and a tenth nation will compete in a play-off competition with six other teams to determine the remaining two qualifiers. This increases the likelihood that Africa will receive an additional place.
The Confederation of African Football (CAF) has been campaigning for at least ten berths, with the continent supplying 54 of FIFA’s 211 member associations, which is only a little bit more than a quarter.
It would appear that a compromise has been made, but the division of territory is still unequal in comparison to that of the more desirable confederations, such as Europe and South America. The latter only has ten member associations, but it is assured that six of those will be at the tournament.
There is also the possibility that a seventh will be there if it makes it through the play-off round. This indicates that 70 percent of South American countries are capable of competing.
The number of guaranteed slots for the European confederation has increased from 13 to 16, while the number of teams guaranteed for the North and Central American confederation has increased from three to six, and the number of guaranteed slots for the Asian confederation has increased from four to eight.
After being forced to compete in a play-off against a team from South America in the past, Oceania will now have an assured berth in the competition.
Since Australia has defected to the Asian confederation, there is minimal opposition coming from New Zealand’s region; therefore, they should be able to qualify for every World Cup under the enlarged format. This puts New Zealand in a position to be the biggest winner.
In 2010, Africa sent a total of six teams to the World Cup, including the hosts, South Africa, as well as teams from Nigeria, Cameroon, Algeria, Ghana, and the Ivory Coast. This is the most teams that Africa has ever sent to the World Cup.
Egypt made history by participating in the World Cup for the first time in 1934, when the competition was held in Italy. They were the first African team to do so. Morocco didn’t make its second appearance from the continent until 1970, and it wouldn’t appear again until 1982, when Africa’s spots were expanded to two. That increased to three in the year 1994, and then to its present count of five in the year 1998.