Chelsea will be handed a guaranteed place in the newly-formatted FIFA Club World Cup in 2025.
A FIFA council meeting in Rwanda on Tuesday will see radical changes to the World Cup from 2026 as well as a new 32-team Club World Cup tournament.
The world’s football bosses will be in attendance to approve the qualifying criteria for the revamped club tournament, where Chelsea are set to be among the beneficiaries.
The Blues and Real Madrid will be guaranteed a spot in the 2025 edition as winners of the 2021 and 2022 Champions League respectively.
Chelsea were 1-0 winners over Manchester City in 2021 before going on to claim the Club World Cup the following year, beating Brazilian side Palmeiras.
The current format sees the seven clubs that have won each confederation’s continental tournament alongside the host nations’ champions, battle it out for the prize.
However the revamp will see 32 teams enter the competition with 12 European clubs invited to take part
The UEFA Champions League winners, UEFA Champions League runners-up, UEFA Europa League winners, and Copa Libertadores winners from the four seasons up to and including the year of the event could all be handed entry to the showpiece tournament.
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Saudi Arabia will stage this year’s competition in a 10-day event between December 12-22.
It highlights the country’s growing ties with top-level sport that have seen a host of high-profile boxing fights, WWE events and investment in Newcastle United.
Saudi Arabia also benefited from Cristiano Ronaldo’s move to Saudi Pro League outfit Al Nassr in January.
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