73rd FIFA Congress

The 73rd FIFA Congress took place in Kigali, Rwanda, on 16 March 2023. It was the first elective Congress to be held in Africa – and Gianni Infantino, standing unopposed, was re-elected by acclamation for a second four-year term as FIFA President.

Reminding the Congress that FIFA, with its 211 Member Associations, had more members than the United Nations, Gianni Infantino took the opportunity to lay out his plans for the next four years, including investments of USD 2.3 billion in football development globally through the FIFA Forward Programme. President Infantino committed to focusing on organising competitions and developing football, to increasing revenues still further and to continuing to improve the game’s status and governance. “When I hear that there is too much football, well maybe yes, but certainly not everywhere,” he said. “Actually, in the majority of the world, there is not enough football, not enough quality football. And when you see the passion that exists for football, then you have to do something.” Gianni Infantino explained that FIFA was working with various confederations and regional associations to discuss the best ways of helping them create new club and national team competitions, at regional and local level. He cited the FIFA Arab Cup™, the Arabian Gulf Cup and the ASEAN Football Federation Championship as examples of what could be achieved. “It’s our duty and our obligation to support these kinds of events,” he said. Another example was the FIFA Series which would take place in the March international window of even years and would involve FIFA supporting the organisation of matches for teams from different confederations who were available. He said there would also be more youth football with the FIFA U-17 World Cup™ taking place annually, instead of every two years, for men and women. This would ensure that players did not miss out simply because they were born in a year which made them too young for one tournament and too old for the next one two years later.

This folder contains official portraits of FIFA President Gianni Infantino.

FIFA is an association of associations of 211 countries from all over the world – more than the United Nations. We want to unite and we want to include. We want to make football truly global.

Gianni Infantino
FIFA President

Gianni Infantino forecasted record revenues of USD 11 billion for the 2023-2026 cycle, and that did not include the first edition of the 32-team tournament involving clubs (subsequently named the Mundial de Clubes FIFA), which will take place in 2025. FIFA would also continue to develop the FIFA+ digital platform which, among other things, will become a source of revenue for many associations, who will have their games broadcast around the world. Following the wide-ranging reform of the transfer system that started in 2017, which has seen the establishment of the FIFA Clearing House and new regulations for loans and agents, Gianni Infantino stated that FIFA would continue to look at ways of making the system more transparent – which could include a discussion about transfer fees. “It might be necessary to introduce a cap, and we have to think about how we can calculate these caps. Everything is possible today, and we will have to look at it with all the other stakeholders, and we will see what we can do,” he said. More immediately, the FIFA President announced a threefold increase in prize money for the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023™. A total of USD 152 million would be distributed among the 32 teams – three times more than in 2019 and a tenfold increase over 2015. USD 110 million of this would be allocated to participating member associations and, for the first time ever, a dedicated proportion of the funding would be ring-fenced for participating players, with the balance retained by member associations for reinvestment in their footballing activities. Additionally, USD 31 million would be distributed as preparation money and USD 11 million for the Club Benefits Programme, which rewards clubs whose players take part in the tournament.

Arsène Wenger gives the low-down on FIFA’s Talent Development Scheme

One of FIFA’s most ambitious targets is to raise the standard of football globally so that 50 national teams are capable of competing for the top honours in men’s and women’s football. The FIFA Talent Development Scheme is a key part of this effort as it looks to help member associations to ensure that every talented player is given the chance to develop and shine. FIFA’s Chief Development Officer Arsène Wenger explained to the Congress that the project was being implemented from 2023. Member associations will receive guidance from FIFA high-performance specialists not only on how to spot potential talents but also on providing them with the infrastructure and coaching they need to progress, as well as a competitive playing environment. Stressing the importance of coaching, he said: “You have two talented players at the age of 12 years old. At the age of 16, if one has 500 hours’ practice, and the other one has 1,000 hours’ practice, believe me, there will be a difference between the two players. So the number of practices and of quality practices is vital.” But he added that, even if the two players received the same hours of practice, there could still be a big difference between them if one had a good coach and the other a bad coach. With this in mind, FIFA is sending coaches to MAs to help educate local coaches. Wenger said that seven pilot projects were under way this year, and he expected the number to rise to 70 by 2026. Once players reached the age of 17, competition became the key factor in development – which was why FIFA had decided to stage the FIFA U-17 World Cup annually from 2025, for both men and women. Wenger concluded: “There is only one way to make football truly global and that is to make education global.”

PARIS, FRANCE - NOVEMBER 09: FIFA Chief of Global Football Development Arsène Wenger poses for a portrait during the MA DevCo meeting at FIFA Paris Offices at FIFA Paris Offices on November 09, 2023 in Paris, France. (Photo by Léo-Paul Ridet/FIFA)

For those who have a talent for football, we have a responsibility to help them develop that. That’s why I believe that we want, in the next four years, to bring more good players in the world.

Arsène Wenger
FIFA Chief of Global Football Development

FIFA President attends amputee match in Kigali

Following the FIFA Congress, the FIFA President attended an amputee match in Kigali and promised more support for amputee footballers. The game was organised by the World Amputee Football Federation (WAFF) to officially launch its women’s programme. Amputee football is one of the fastest-growing sports around the world, with over 50 countries now full members of the WAFF and more than 5,000 players.

WAFF Women's Amputee Football Event - 73rd FIFA Congress

Gianni Infantino was joined on the touchline by FIFA Puskás Award winner Marcin Oleksy, himself an amputee, FIFA Secretary General at the time Fatma Samoura, FIFA Council member Isha Johansen, FIFA Senior Football Advisor and FIFA World Cup™ winner Youri Djorkaeff, and FIFA Legend, former Morocco international and Head of FIFA’s Doha Office – Houssine Kharja.

I promised all of the players that from now on, FIFA will work together with them and we will develop this, because they deserve much more. They are such great examples for all of us.

Gianni Infantino
FIFA President
WAFF Women Amputee Football event - 73rd FIFA Congress


Foreword by the Chairperson of the Governance, Audit and Compliance Committee

Governance, Audit and Compliance Committee chairperson Mukul Mudgal reflects on the committee’s activities and achievements.

FIFA Council meetings in 2023

The FIFA Council met five times in 2023, with a wide range of key decisions taken or ratified – including the new International Match Calendars for men’s football and women’s football and the hosting of the FIFA World Cup 2030™ and FIFA World Cup 2034™.