ConIFA World Cup 2018 – What is it?

The CONIFA World Football Cup is an international football tournament organized by CONIFA, an umbrella association for states, minorities, stateless peoples and regions unaffiliated with FIFA, planned to be held every two years.

CONIFA is an organisation that provides an outlet for countries, sub-national entities, stateless peoples and ethnic minorities to play international football. Because a number of their members represent diasporas or displaced peoples, it is not always possible for the host of the World Football Cup to be able to hold the competition in their own “territory”. As a consequence of this, CONIFA defines the “host” of the World Football Cup as being the member association that heads the organising committee, whether or not the tournament is actually played in the geographical area that the host association represents.

The 2018 competition saw the tournament expanded from 12 to 16 teams, and featured a full set of qualification criteria as laid down by CONIFA. In addition to the various friendly tournaments sanctioned as qualifiers, the 2018 tournament featured ranking points awarded for games played by members, which went towards the awarding of various continental places to CONIFA’s various geographical zones. For the first time, teams from both North America and Oceania gained places in the competition.

In June 2017, at the CONIFA meeting held during the 2017 CONIFA European Football Cup in Northern Cyprus, it was announced that Barawa would be the hosts of the 2018 World Football Cup, with the announcement of the actual location of the tournament (owing to the Barawa FA representing part of the Somali diaspora and being located in the United Kingdom) subsequently announced as London in September 2017.

There have been two previous winners of the ConIFA World Cup. County of Nice in 2014 and Abkhazia in 2016.

The 2018 World Cup kicks-off on the 31st May.

The event is sponsored by Paddy Power.

For more about the ConIFA World Cup 2018 and to buy tickets to the events click through to the official site here

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