FIFA could be forced to alter the predetermined schedules of several tournaments due to the coronavirus outbreak. FIFA president Gianni Infantino released a statement on Tuesday notifying that the organisation is considering the requests from CONMEBOL and UEFA to alter the dates of 2021 FIFA Club World Cup to accommodate the postponed 2020 Copa America and Euro 2020. Gianni Infantino further stated that in response to the requests from the continental federations, they will look to move the 2021 FIFA Club World Cup to a different date.
FIFA President Gianni Infantino says that the 2021 China FIFA Club World Cup should be moved to "later in 2021, in 2022 or in 2023" as Euro 2020 Championship and the Copa America have been postponed to June/July, 2021 due to COVID-19 pandemic pic.twitter.com/QbgIZWlFuh— Xinhua Sports (@XHSports) March 18, 2020
The coronavirus pandemic has majorly affected the sporting community around the world. Football has equally been affected as domestic leagues have come to a halt for an indefinite period of time. With a view to letting the domestic leagues complete their respective seasons, UEFA announced that Euro 2020 will be postponed. Subsequently, CONMEBOL also announced the postponement of the 2020 Copa America.
With both the tournaments now set for the summer of 2021, it poses major questions about the fate of the revamped version of the Club World Cup, scheduled for the same slot in 2021. Considering requests from the confederations, Gianni Infantino has stated that altering the predetermined schedule could result in an imbalance in its solidarity and could result in upheaval for the member associations. However, Gianni Infantino noted that he plans to maintain the right 'balance' for football and hence called for an immediate Bureau of the Council conference.
Gianni Infantino added that he plans to bring up several key points at the conference namely accepting the request from CONMEBOL and UEFA and rescheduling of the Club World Cup later in 2021, in 2022 or in 2023. FIFA also plans to discuss the aforementioned with the Chinese FA, who will be hosting the Club World Cup.
Meanwhile, the statement from FIFA also noted that the organisation will discuss making a donation of $10 million to the World Health Organisation (WHO) and also the 'possibility of establishing a Global Football Assistance Fund to help members of the football community affected by this crisis.'