After knocking on the door several times, Uganda’s national football team, The Cranes will welcome news that the bureau of football’s world governing body, Fifa, has proposed that at least nine African nations can qualify for the World Cup when it expands from 32 teams to 48 in 2026.
It has recommended that the continent’s allocation rises from five to nine direct qualifiers for the finals.
As well as the direct qualifiers, a 10th African nation will be one of six teams from around the globe that will play-off for two places at the finals.
The expansion of the World Cup is meant to be a way of redressing the balance of how the continental bodies are represented.
However, this allocation of places may cause controversy, with Africa essentially gaining just one more place than Europe despite having a similar number of members.
The slots also mean that more than half of the nations in The South American Football Confederation, Conmebol, will now play at the World Cup finals.
The allocation of places at the 2026 World Cup will be submitted for ratification by the Fifa Council when they meet in Bahrain on 9 May.
- Asia: 8 direct slots – increased from 4.5 (currently 46 members)
- Africa: 9 direct slots – increased from 5 (currently 54 members)
- North and central America: 6 direct slots – increased from 3.5 (currently 34 members)
- South America: 6 direct slots – increased from 4.5 (currently 10 members)
- Oceania: 1 direct slot – increased from 0.5 (currently 11 members) and
- Europe: 16 direct slots – increased from 13 (currently 55 members)