December 5, 2023

FIFA president Gianni Infantino said Thursday that the Qatar World Cup is on track to generate record revenues of $7 billion, with experts predicting a long-term financial boom.

Infantino told FIFA’s annual congress that the organization’s finances were “great” and that it would exceed its target of $6.4 billion in the four years leading up to 2022 by $600 million according to Vwin’s sports news report.

Despite previous scandals and the coronavirus outbreak, when spectators turned more to television screens and other new platforms, the governing body has seen income from television, sponsors, and marketing soar.

According to its reports, by the time of the World Cup final on December 18, FIFA expects “television broadcasting rights to have set a new record,” according to its reports.

FIFA’s revenues work on a four-year cycle between World Cups, and it reported earnings of $766 million for 2021, up from a pandemic-hit $266 million in 2020, and it had already contracted $6.11 billion of its goal income by the end of last year.

The majority of revenue is deposited into FIFA accounts during the World Cup year. Despite the controversy surrounding the awarding of this year’s World Cup to Qatar, which has been criticized for its labor practices, income has increased since the previous World Cup in Russia.

FIFA’s financial situation was so favorable that it spent over a billion dollars on pandemic recovery efforts in football while still increasing its cash and asset reserves by 21% to $5.5 billion.

“The organization’s financial condition is solid and robust,” the global body’s statement said.

Simon Chadwick, a sports economics professor at the EMLyon Enterprise College in France, said that it has always been conceivable that the pandemic would make the rich in sport get richer and the poor get poorer.

“Organisations similar to FIFA have the assets and organisational resilience to face up to the worst results of Covid,” he added.

“Secondly, the sponsors and broadcasters seemed to have protected havens in the course of the Covid storm — that’s, properties confirmed to have stability, industrial worth and a longtime presence.”

He noted that soccer’s World Cup reaches a wide range of target audiences and is more global than rival sports like cricket or American soccer.

FIFA is expanding into e-sports and other new channels, and Chadwick remarked that there is still a lot of optimism about FIFA’s financial potential.

“Add to this the present NFT, crypto forex and metaverse frenzy, and FIFA — like many in soccer — will probably be anticipating income windfalls that may maintain it into the medium and long-term.”

Despite the crisis of seven top FIFA executives being indicted on corruption charges before the 2015 conference, the organization’s finances have remained stellar.

The FIFA windfall has been boosted by more than $200 million in assets seized from regional soccer barons by US authorities.

“It’s an excessive expectation for any world organisation to fully eradicate problems with corruption or scandal,” said Chadwick. “One can solely hope that FIFA will proceed shifting in the fitting path.”

“FIFA has labored laborious to broaden its constituency; as an example, by bringing onboard sponsors from international locations the place requirements of governance and ranges of scrutiny are considerably completely different to, say, Europe.”

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