THE Namibia Football Association (NFA) has welcomed a proposal by FIFA President Gianni Infantino to increase the number of African teams in the World Cup tournament.
The proposal includes adding eight new teams to the tournament, with Africa getting two of those. A final decision on Infantino’s proposal will be made in October this year.
If agreed to, the decision will take effect during the 2026 World Cup as the 2018 and 2022 tournaments have already been determined.
NFA Secretary General, Barry Rukoro said the national football body, appreciates the proposal as more African teams will have the opportunity to qualify to play in the World Cup.
He however was of the view that African teams that have so far participated in the World Cup have not been impressive as they have struggled to go beyond the group stages.
With regard to whether Namibia will be at the World Cup in 2026, Rukoro said it was for the country to consider how much it wanted to be at the World Cup and how much it was willing to invest to get there.
“If Namibia’s answer to those two questions are yes we want to go to the World Cup and we will invest whatever is needed, then my contribution to your question is that NFA has proven itself to deliver qualification for international competitions and continental trophies, even beyond the constraints posed by the limited grants from the State,” he stressed.
Asked what role the private should play to get Namibia to the World Cup, Rukoro did not mince his words: “For the business to start appreciating their role in sport, the media must first do their job by simply asking corporate citizens, at least the majority, what they are doing in the sport domain. Until you guys in the media start asking them uncomfortable questions they are fine and cruising.”
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