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Infantino talks up Women’s World League, Club World Cup

Megan Rapinoe of USA received the trophy from Gianni Infantino as best striker of the tournament during the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup (by Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)

Fifa president Gianni Infantino has said he will continue to push for a new Women’s World League national team competition, despite seeing his original proposal blocked from within world football’s governing body.

Infantino was speaking at the inaugural Fifa Football Conference, which was held in Milan, Italy yesterday (Sunday). The Conference reflected on this summer’s Women’s World Cup in France, with Infantino stating that Fifa has to “build on the momentum” created by the tournament.

In July, the ruling Fifa Council approved the expansion of the World Cup from 24 to 32 teams for the next edition of the competition in 2023. Infantino said he had originally put forward his plan for a Women’s World League in 2017, adding that the proposal had received “big, big support” from football officials.

He added: “We then brought it back to the Fifa Council, where it was, how shall I say? Put on hold, or blocked for probably some sports politics reasons? I don’t know exactly why. But we will return it back to the table until it is approved.”

In October 2018, Fifa launched its first ever global strategy for women’s football, which included plans to introduce a women’s equivalent to the men’s Club World Cup. Infantino returned to this topic yesterday, stating that a 16 or 24-team tournament could be held over three to four weeks, with the host nation assigned on a rotational basis.

He added: “We need to create a World Cup for clubs. We cannot think that we can seriously develop women’s football by only having national team (events). We also need clubs, to give them more reasons to invest and a stage where they can perform. So I will propose a Club World Cup. Every year, starting in 2020 or the year after next. I don’t think it will take us a long time to organise it.”