Bierhoff latest German football figure to oppose biennial World Cup


Berlin (AFP) – German FA director Oliver Bierhoff on Wednesday said he is opposed to the controversial idea of staging a World Cup every two years as FIFA’s proposed project receives a clear “nein” from Germany.

“We always have to keep the strain on the players in mind,” Bierhoff, who is Germany team director, said at a press conference in Hamburg.

“Playing a World Cup every two years? I haven’t found anyone yet who has said that’s a nice idea.”

Germany are on course to play at next year’s World Cup in Qatar as they hold a four-point lead at the top of the qualifying group going into Friday’s qualifier against Romania in Hamburg.

Bierhoff believes FIFA should focus less on “maximising revenue and more on quality assurance”.

“It’s about us seeing great, passionate games. That is actually no longer possible with the tight schedule, both physically and mentally,” Bierhoff warned.

Last Thursday, world football’s governing body FIFA held an online summit with its 211 member federations in an attempt to rally support for the idea of a biennial World Cup.

The concept has already met stiff resistance in Germany.

Rainer Koch, interim president of the German Football Association (DFB) told Kicker he finds the proposal “not good for the future of football”.

“Let’s continue to discuss improvements to the match calendar, but let’s not pursue the idea of a World Cup every two years,” he added.

Likewise on Monday, Philipp Lahm, who lifted the World Cup trophy as captain of Germany in 2014, says the finals should “remain as it is” on a four-year cycle.

“I am totally convinced that things should stay as they are,” added Lahm, 37, who is tournament director of the Euro 2024 finals which will be hosted by Germany. 

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