Friday, June 2, 2023

FIFA recalls Indonesia to host the U20 World Cup

It is decided by political questions because of the participation of Israelis born in that country.

Courtesy | The tournament would start on May 20 on the FIFA schedule.

Indonesia was stripped of hosting the men’s U20 World Cup on Wednesday, just eight weeks before the tournament, amid political uproar over Israel’s participation.

FIFA said it had withdrawn Indonesia as the venue for the 24-team tournament, which was due to start on May 20, “due to current conditions”, without specifying.

The decision was made after a meeting in Doha between FIFA president Gianni Infantino and Indonesian soccer federation president Erick Thohir.

Israel qualified for its first Under-20 World Cup in June. The country’s communication in the lead time of Friday in Bali has been stirred up by the political opposition this month.

Indonesia is the world’s most famous Muslim-majority nation and has no formal diplomatic relations with Israel, although it officially supports the Palestinian cause.

Indonesia remains as host was left in limbo on Sunday when FIFA postponed the group draw. It is unclear who could now host the tournament, which was to be played in six stadiums in Indonesia.

Argentina, which had not called the tournament, is reportedly interested in hosting.

“The new host will be announced as soon as possible, and the date of the tournament will remain unchanged,” FIFA said.

The Indonesian soccer federation could be sanctioned by FIFA. The suspension could remove Indonesia from qualifying in Asia for the 2026 World Cup, which kicks off in October.

FIFA appeared to place all the blame on Wednesday from Thohir, the former president of the Italian club Inter Milan, the team Infantino supports, and the former co-heir of the Philadelphia 76ers.

The FIFA team will continue to work in Indonesia in the coming months, soccer’s governing body said, “under the orders of President Thohir.”

Indonesian soccer and public authorities have accepted FIFA’s hosting requirements in 2019 before being selected to host the U20 World Cup. The coronavirus pandemic forced it to be extended for two years.

But Indonesian President Joko Widodo said Tuesday night that his administration did not agree to Israel’s entry. He told the citizens that he met the country as a host before he knew that Israel was called.

Israel qualified to reach the semifinals of the U19 European Championship. The team advanced to the final and lost it against England. Israel participates in Europe, as a member of UEFA, it left the Asian Confederation in 1970 for political and security reasons.

FIFA selects Indonesia as the host country for the FIFA U-20 World Cup 2023

— in Spanish (@fifacom_es) March 29, 2023

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