European clubs seal FIFA deal to increase World Cup revenue
GENEVA — European soccer clubs sealed a new working agreement with FIFA on Monday after securing a 70% increase in their share of World Cup revenues for the 2026 and 2030 tournaments.
The European Club Association said it renewed its working accord with FIFA through 2030, which also could lead to clubs having a say in managing commercial deals for the revamped Club World Cup that is scheduled to start in 2025.
Part of the agreement, which missed a target to be signed in December at the World Cup in Qatar, ensures clubs worldwide will share $355 million of FIFA’s income from each of the next two editions of the men’s World Cup. FIFA conservatively budgeted to earn at least $11 billion from 2023-26.
Clubs shared $209 million from each of the 2018 and 2022 tournaments, with money paid on a daily rate for the time players spent away with their national teams.
The “Memorandum of Understanding” was agreed to on the sidelines of the ECA’s biannual assembly in Budapest, Hungary. It was brokered by ECA chairman Nasser al-Khelaïfi, the Qatari president of Paris Saint-Germain, and FIFA president Gianni Infantino.
The deal promises some stability in the often volatile world of soccer politics, and should bind clubs into respecting the FIFA-managed calendar of national team games and tournaments.
The calendar, which mandates when clubs must release players who are selected for national team squads, was confirmed and extended by FIFA at meetings in Rwanda two weeks ago.
FIFA and the ECA will work together on a revamped, 32-team Club World Cup to be played every four years starting in 2025. Securing cooperation with Europe was essential to its launch with 12 European teams taking part.
The format, broadcasting and sponsorship details for the tournament have yet to be decided.
Al-Khelaïfi said talks with FIFA were planned “on potential structures for managing the commercial rights going forward.”
Real Madrid and Chelsea already earned their places in the 2025 Club World Cup as the Champions League winners in the past two seasons. The next two Champions League winners also will get places. UEFA's ranking of European clubs will decide other entries with a national quota of two teams.