FILE - In this Monday, June 11, 2018 file photo, FIFA President Gianni Infantino speaks with participants of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) meeting in Moscow, Russia. A person with knowledge of the plans tells The Associated Press FIFA President Gianni Infantino is doubling down on his Club World Cup plans with a proposal for an annual tournament despite European soccer’s resistance to any competition that challenges the supremacy of the Champions League.(AP Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky, File)

FIFA president: new events will protect soccer's relevance

October 25, 2018 - 5:43 pm

KIGALI, Rwanda (AP) — FIFA President Gianni Infantino says he is pushing for support of new competitions despite Europe's opposition because it is his duty to protect the "relevance of football."

On the eve of the soccer governing body's council meeting, Infantino revealed other investors are interested in backing a revamped Club World Cup and a new worldwide Nations League. So far, only a consortium featuring Japan's SoftBank that has offered $25 billion in guaranteed revenue has been identified.

But European soccer's federation remains a thorn in the side of Infantino, who wants council members on Friday to agree in principle to replace competitions that lack commercial appeal. UEFA clubs are opposed to adding more games to their schedule, especially any that threaten the popular Champions League.

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