Gianni Infantino will be FIFA president through 2027. (Photo courtesy of FIFA)
Gianni Infantino was re-elected unopposed as FIFA president for another four years, during the 73rd FIFA Congress in Kigali, Rwanda on Thursday.
“Being FIFA President is an incredible honor, an incredible privilege, and it is also a great responsibility,” Infantino said. “I am truly humbled and touched by your support, and I promise you that I will continue serving FIFA, serving football all over the world and serving all 211 FIFA member associations.”
For the first time in its history, an elective FIFA Congress took place in Africa. The proceedings were opened by His Excellency Paul Kagame, president of the Republic of Rwanda. In his address, Kagame welcomed delegates from the 208 gathered member associations to his country, and congratulated Infantino on his impending re-election.
Infantino stressed FIFA’s role to organize competitions and to develop football. He announced that the 32-team Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand later this year will receive an extensive increase in prize money to more ethan $150 million – more than three times the value from the last tournament in 2019, and ten times more than in 2015. However, it is still less than the men’s World Cup.
Infantino also talked impending changes to the Under-17 World Cups at boys’ and girls’ level, which will see those tournaments played on an annual basis, as well as the launch of the FIFA World Series and the revised 32-team FIFA Club World Cup, with the intention of giving teams from every confederation more opportunities to compete.
For the next financial cycle, the commitment of $11 billion in revenue over the next four years was stated, a substantial increase on the initial target of $6.4 billion from the previous cycle, and an increase on the $7.5 billion in revenue that was eventually reported.
The consolidated financial statements for 2022, the FIFA statutory financial statements for 2022, the 2023-2026 budget, the 2024 detailed budget and the appointment of the auditors for 2023-2025 also were approved. The date of the next Congress was May 17, 2024, the venue of which is yet to be confirmed.