By Lexi Elo with Agency Report
FIFA has pledged to distribute $209 million (€194m) to the clubs who release players to compete at the 2018 and 2022 World Cups. World football’s governing body and the European Club Association (ECA) announced on Friday that an extended agreement has been reached to compensate clubs and “further enhance consideration of club football interests”.
FIFA president Sepp Blatter said in a statement: “We are taking a huge step forward in promoting relations between FIFA and the clubs in a spirit of mutual and constructive cooperation.”
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The statement continued: “The agreement puts the emphasis on fundamental principles such as the promotion of training and player development as well as the sporting integrity of the competitions, in the interests of the game and its appeal to the public.
“In addition, FIFA will continue with the Club Protection Programme, by which clubs are compensated for losses incurred due to players being injured while on international duty. The Club Protection Programme will therefore be extended to at least until after the end of the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar.”
The 2018 World Cup will be staged in Russia, with the 2022 edition schedule to take place in Qatar.