After FIFA approved a new format for the World Cup from 2026 that will include 48 teams. Twitter reacted to the news with more than a hint of cynicism.
— FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) January 10, 2017
Some tried to help ease the confusion of what the new format might look like.
How the World Cup is set to look from 2026 after FIFA decides today to increase the tournament from 32 to 48 teams pic.twitter.com/ktwPFram7A
— Rob Harris (@RobHarris) January 10, 2017
Using FIFA rankings, here's how World Cup 2026 groups could look. Seeds listed first; top 2 go through. Hell of a draw for Wales and England pic.twitter.com/HYdnRXJDyQ
— Huw Davies (@thehuwdavies) January 10, 2017
World Cup 2026 pic.twitter.com/ik1yfCrvYI
— a d i l (@Barzaboy) January 10, 2017
However, there was a lot of cynicism, much of it targeting FIFA’s speckled past with finances.
#FIFA in voting for lots more money shocker.
— Jen Offord (@inspireajen) January 10, 2017
Maybe Sepp Blatter wasn't so bad after all.
— Brooks Peck (@BrooksDT) January 10, 2017
FIFA weighing up the pros and cons of a 48-team World Cup. pic.twitter.com/jzIi6VDP29
— Titus O'Reily (@TitusOReily) January 10, 2017
While others questioned the playability of the new format.
Are we definitely sure there'll be 48 countries left by 2026? Will FIFA just arbitrarily divide up the post-apocalyptical wastelands?
— James Maw (@JamesMawFFT) January 10, 2017
The 2026 World Cup will have 48 squads of 23… so, 1,104 players.
Only the very best players do it at World Cups though… right?
— Richard Innes (@bigrichinnes) January 10, 2017
48 teams in the World Cup? As if it wasn't already expensive to complete the sticker book, now I'm gonna need a loan ?
— Smiv (@smivadee) January 10, 2017
And one tweet said it was the end of the tournament.
A moment’s silence for the 32-team World Cup pic.twitter.com/2btrC0FCpY
— Bleacher Report UK (@br_uk) January 10, 2017
The Spanish threatened legal action.
Spanish league want to take FIFA to court to stop World Cup expanding to 48 teams. La Liga say they weren't consulted on unacceptable plan
— Kaveh Solhekol (@SkyKaveh) January 10, 2017
Some tried to show optimism.
The Fifa council unanimously agree to a 48-team World Cup starting from 2026. Looking forward to the big one between San Marino and Andorra.
— Liam Canning (@LiamPaulCanning) January 10, 2017
And others seemed to be genuinely happy.
Don't really understand the gripes about World Cup expansion. It seems to be only coming from 'big' nations. IMO: best idea for a while.
— Ross Dunbar (@rossdunbar93) January 10, 2017
I actually think a 48-team World Cup will be good. Group stage obviously stupid, but then a straight knockout from last 32? Yes please.
— Alex Chick (@alex_eurosport) January 10, 2017
And then there was the inevitable jibes.
Scotland fans when they hear they've got a small chance of qualification after FIFA announce they are having a 48-team World Cup as of 2026 pic.twitter.com/awfi9rjFz5
— Only Fools Reactions (@OFAHReactions) January 10, 2017
FIFA confirm a 48-team World Cup from 2026, which will give teams such as Burkina Faso and Lego Land the opportunity to eliminate England
— Paddy Power (@paddypower) January 10, 2017
While the more creative minds thought other sports could follow FIFA’s lead.
After World Cup 48 team nod, boxing announces 3 fighters in ring plan; "it's more inclusive" say organisers
— John Dillon (@JohnDillonSport) January 10, 2017