FIFA President, Gianni Infantino has been re-elected for another term.
He will lead the World’s Football Governing body till 2027 after winning unopposed at the congress of world football’s governing body on Thursday.
The 52-year-old Swiss lawyer, who succeeded former FIFA president, Sepp Blatter in 2016, was waved in for a third term by acclamation, just as he was four years ago, by delegates from the 211 member federations.
“To all those who love me, and I know there are so many, and also those who hate me, I know there are a few: I love you all,” Infantino told delegates in Kigali, the Rwandan capital.
While FIFA statutes currently limit a president to a maximum of three four-year terms, Infantino has already prepared the ground to stay until 2031, declaring in December that his first three years at the helm did not count as a full term.
Infantino has overseen the expansion of the men’s and women’s World Cup and huge increases in FIFA revenues.
FIFA announced on Tuesday that the 2026 World Cup, the first edition to be enlarged to 48 teams, will be “the most inclusive World Cup ever”.
He said the tournament in North America will feature 104 matches, a huge increase from the 64 at the most recent World Cup, as it will start with 12 groups of four teams.
The upcoming women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand later this year will be the first to feature 32 teams, up from 24 teams at the last edition in 2019.
Infantino is also planning to introduce a new, expanded Club World Cup to be played every four years starting in 2025 and featuring 32 teams.
“We need more, not fewer, competitions worldwide,” he told delegates at the 73rd FIFA Congress.