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The International Federation of Association Football (FIFA), on Wednesday, shelved its plan to expand the 2022 Qatar World Cup to top 48 nations, sticking to its original plan of top 32 teams. The federation cited political and logistical complexities of using another Person Gulf nation. The Associated Press reported that FIFA President Gianni Infantino, who heavily favoured the motion, was forced to withdraw the expansion plan due to regional diplomatic crisis and the governing body's demands on host nations to adhere to its human and labour rights requirements. This means that the first World Cup in the Middle East will not witness the new format of the tournament. People will have to wait till 2026 to see 48 teams in the World Cup, which will be co-hosted by United States, Canada and Mexico. FIFA, in its statement, mentioned that the plans of having Qatar's neighbouring countries host a few matches fell apart "Following a thorough and comprehensive consultation process with the involvement of all the relevant stakeholders" which led to the conclusion that under the current circumstances such a proposal could not be made now." "Due to the advanced stage of preparations and the need for a detailed assessment of the potential logistical impact on the host country, more time would be required and a decision could not be taken before the deadline of June. It was therefore decided not to further pursue this option," FIFA further added in its release. An internal FIFA report had earlier stated that United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia were unfit to co-host the tournament until they restored their economic and travel ties with Qatar that were severed two years ago. That left Kuwait and Oman as other suitable alternatives. Oman responded to FIFA by clearly stating that the country isn't interested on hosting any WC games. Kuwait, posed more and bigger problems. Firstly, after Infantino's visit to Kuwait last month, FIFA concluded that it lacked time to prepare a country to host extra games. The Jaber Al-Ahmad International Stadium in Kuwait has a capacity of 60,000, while the Sabah Al-Salem Stadium only has 26,000 seats. That meant that both the venue would be required to upgrade under a tight time constraint, posing problems on working conditions and labor rights. "A joint analysis, in this respect, concluded that due to the advanced stage of preparations and the need for a detailed assessment of the potential logistical impact on the host country, more time would be required and a decision could not be taken before the deadline of June. It was therefore decided not to further pursue this option," FIFA further added Moreover, Kuwait has a complete ban on alcohol, which would be problematic for one of FIFA's major sponsors, Budweiser. Qatar, on the other hand, has an exemption that allows foreigners to drink alcohol. FIFA has already had to adapt to cope with taking its showpiece tournament to the Middle East for the first time. While Qatar won a vote in 2010 on the basis of staging a June-July World Cup, FIFA shifted the tournament from its usual slot because of the fierce summer heat to November 21-December 18, 2022. "With just three and a half years to go until kick off, Qatar remains as committed as ever to ensuring the 32-team FIFA World Cup in 2022 is one of the best tournaments ever and one that makes the entire Arab world proud," the 2022 World Cup organising committee said in a statement.