Organising committee approves tournament format with reintroduction of match for fifth place
At its meeting in Zurich today (12 March 2008) under the chairmanship of Viacheslav Koloskov (Russia), the Organising Committee for the FIFA Club World Cup expressed its satisfaction at the tournament's increasing success, which is particularly notable in terms of attendances and television coverage. The meeting was opened by FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter and was conducted in the presence of a delegation from the Japan Football Association and Dentsu Inc. (the event's executive producer).
With regard to the tournament format (see schedule below), the committee approved the reintroduction of the match for fifth place to grant all teams the chance to play at least two games over the course of the competition with the exception of the losers of the opening match.
In the light of the success of the 2007 tournament, the participation of a team representing the host country - in effect the winner of the J.League 2008 - alongside the champions of the six confederations was also ratified. Furthermore, it was agreed that if a Japanese club, irrespective of whether they are J.League champions or not, also win the AFC Champions League, the same procedure would apply as last year.
The reintroduction of the match for fifth place has also prompted the organising committee to increase the prize fund for the 2008 tournament by USD 500,000 to a total of USD 16.5 million. The winners will take away USD 5 million, the losing finalists USD 4 million, the third-placed team USD 2.5 million, the fourth-placed team USD 2 million, the fifth-placed team USD 1.5 million (USD 500,000 more than last year), the sixth-placed team USD 1 million and the seventh-placed team USD 500,000.
The organising committee also approved the ticketing policy for the competition. Further details will be published in due course.
The tournament is scheduled to take place from 11 to 21 December 2008 (subject to approval by the FIFA Executive Committee) and will once again be held at the National Stadium in Tokyo, the Toyota Stadium and the Yokohama International Stadium.
Finally, the FIFA Executive Committee will decide which country will host the 2009 and 2010 FIFA Club World Cups at its meeting on 27 May 2008. Following Portugal's withdrawal from the running, there are three remaining candidates: Australia, the United Arab Emirates and Japan. The candidates must submit their full bid dossiers to FIFA by 15 May.
2008 FIFA Club World Cup match schedule
11.12 (Thu) , Tokyo, 1, Host v. OFC
12.12 (Fri), rest day
13.12 (Sat), Tokyo, 2, CAF v. CONCACAF
14.12 (Sun), Toyota, 3, Winner match 1 v. AFC
15.12 (Mon), rest day
16.12 (Tue), rest day
17.12 (Wed), Tokyo, 4, Winner match 2 v. CONMEBOL
18.12 (Thu) Yokohama, 5, Match for fifth place Yokohama , 6, Winner match 3 v. UEFA
19.12 (Fri), rest day
20.12 (Sat), rest day
21.12 (Sun) Yokohama, 7, Match for third place Yokohama, 8, Final (W4 v. W6)