Extra time extended: new decision taken against the interest of players

In recent years, the football landscape has changed, but not necessarily in a good way. It was criticized at the time of its launch that the League of Nations only substitutes friendly matches and therefore does not actually add matches. Conference leagues provide European matches for teams that do not have these matches and therefore do not appear to be the root of the problem.

But European football is no less problematic. From the following season, the various continental competitions would switch to another format. Beyond the extremely questionable readability of future versions, the number of matches is a point of concern. In the Champions League groups, the number of matches will be reduced to eight per team. Add to this the new play-offs, a sort of round of 16 that will concern half the clubs, and so you could see future champions playing 15 or 17 matches in the final stages, compared to 13 currently. And this increase will not clearly be linked to reductions elsewhere. That would be much more beautiful.

On the contrary, we will continue to add more. Since 2016, Euro 24 is played, including one additional meeting. For the World Cup, the change from 2026 to 48 countries would not add matches as the semi-finalists would still play seven, but FIFA wanted to do this by holding the tournament every two years. Never keen on views that are not unanimous, the institution has reformed the Club World Cup as well. So far, the European champions have played only two matches in this lesser-known competition. From 2025, an increase to 32 qualifiers, including twelve European ones, will offer seven matches to the finalists. Even though this tournament will replace the Confederations Cup, the change will only add more and more matches.

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