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Reduce African Places

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posted Jun 26, 2010

I know it's good to have a variation and encourage the growth of football quality in Africa, but they should do it at club level before giving them as many places in the world cup because they just aren't good enough..

teams like Russia, Czech republic, Ireland, Croatia and Turkey couldn't qualify yet Nigeria and Cameroon could and yet again fell at the first hurdle.

Give europe a couple more places instead of Africa I say, so when they are ready they can compete and have more belief in themselves anyway.

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posted Jun 26, 2010


I think the balance is about right.

Why give an extra place to Concacaf? It's already a gimme for Mexico and the USA. The Oceania group should be incorporated into Asia now that the Aussies have flown the coop and South America should include all of their nations in smaller groups not just the major ten in a ridiculously long qualifying competition. Why play eighteen games just to get to a World Cup?

All round we need smaller groups with just the one qualifier. That would make international football less intrusive and more interesting.

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comment by -arfa- (U14383731)

posted Jun 26, 2010

The hosts and the last winners plus 30 groups, in a free world wide draw, no seeding, that would be fair if you are good enough you get there. No seeding in the finals either.

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posted Jun 26, 2010

If they had the money of Europe, Asia and South America, perhaps third world countries could compete but you can't develop an Ajax style academy in every African town.
They will develop at a much slower pace, hardly a reason for making it tougher.
Much sooner help the African nations as opposed to hindering them.

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posted Jun 26, 2010

Europe should get two more places, one more for South America and one more for Asia. Africa does not have the footballing infastructure that the Asian countries have built up over the years. More representation from that part of the world, the likes of China, a Middle Eastern team and perhaps one from the Indian Subcontinent would do wonders for the development for the game.

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posted Jun 26, 2010


China couldn't qualify from an average group. The best middle eastern team lost to New Zealand in a play off and India are rubbish at football.

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posted Jun 26, 2010

Good God!

How much more help does Africa need? They get more money thrown at them than any other confederation, lest no one forget that Africa are the reason why Havelange and now Blatter are Presidents, because these guys offered Africa more places and funding for their Votes.

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posted Jun 26, 2010

It's very simple really.

About 30 years ago, FIFA decided to change its allocations in an attempt to help develop the game in parts of the world which for the most part it had previously ignored. It was a sort of affirmative action applied to football.

Before this, tournaments would at best have 1 representative from Africa, 1 from Asia and 1 from North/Central America. Sometimes, they even had to play-off between them for a single spot.

So where are we now?

Asia/Oceania has qualified 2 teams for the knockout stages, 2 have finished third in their groups (one of them finishing unbeaten, the other having lost to one European team and beaten another). Only one finished bottom.

Asia has improved quite a lot. South Korea used to be the only Asian country that looked anywhere near competitive (though they were largely view as whipping horses), but now Japan and Australia also seem to be challenging. The knock-on effect (as with S.Korea before) will be that these countries in turn will help raise the overall continental standards.

North America has qualified 2 out of 3 teams for the k.o. stage, one of them topping their group. The third team lost twice - 2-0 and 1-0 - and drew once. That's no worse than France.

So North America looks to be improving too, as years ago you would never have expected that sort of performance unless the Cup was held in their own backyard.

While Africa has gone backwards, Asian and North American teams have beaten European opponents that had topped their own WCQ groups.

All but one of the South American teams have topped their Group, and only 1 team has actually lost a game. Why would Ireland be more deserving than Ecuador or Peru (or whoever missed out of the WC in SAmerica)?

So, if Asia and N.America have made obvious progress and South America has easily outperformed Europe, why should extra slots be allocated to Europe? I don't see it.

If anything, reward the good progress made by CONMEBOL and the AFC or the outstanding performance by S.American teams. Europe has more than its fair share with more than double the slots of any other continent.

Alternatively, FIFA could apply a ranking coefficient based on World Cup performances - based on the AVERAGE result of the participating teams - because it would be skewed to simply look at absolute numbers qualifying for the last 16 when one continent starts with 13 contestants and others only have 4 or 5.

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posted Jun 26, 2010

Some people need help. We all know of African players playing their part in the development of other leagues not to mention their assymilation into european teams. Zidane, Viera et al spring to mind. (not complaining about it just stating it as fact).

Other nations have history on their side impacting finances and their leagues. I accept the reality we live in but IF there was as much money in African football, can you honestly tell me they wouldnt be more competitive?

Dont we all like to see the Etos, Essiens and Drogbas(PL's top scorer by the way) of this world? Where are they from? Apart from probably the Brazilians and Argentinians, other teams develop much more from finances, huge academies and tv money as opposed to a comparative abundance of natural talent plucked from relative obscurity. There has been an imbalance nobody can dispute caused by African governments and FAs however to dismiss the hand in that history the Europeans have played is to have ones preverbial head in the sand. If everyone started on level playing fields, The Brazilians and Argentines would still be quite something but to think the dizzy heights reached by the rest would be a given is debatable..well at least the Gulf is.

We have recently seen a massive improvement in these teams and if you look at the time it took at players (teams still have work to do), they are there or there about. The world cup is just that "world" pitting the best from all parts of the world against each other, not just Europe and South America. If some of the statements on here where adhered to, europe would have a lot less nations in it with more going to the south americans as they are equal in wins since 1930 (I think its 9 - 9) however with nearly 3 times as many places going to europe 13 to 5.

It is easy to look down and say "they" dont deserve as many places but there is usually someone else who could use that argument against you.

Just my opinion and enjoy the world cup people.

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posted Jun 26, 2010

My point here was not to defend Europe or South America it was to compliment the good performances by Asia and N/Central America.

Africa has done nothing to deserve 5 automatic places but Concacaf has 3 and Asia has 4.......Two of each have got through the group whereas one from 6 has for Africa...and its in their continent!.

African players may enhance the Premier League but the players around them enhance them!. Englands performance has been bemoaned and the excuse has been given that the players look good because of the International players around them, maybe it works the other way as well.

Dont please bring in the issue of money and funding, Africa has had far more than any other region in the world promised by successive FIFA delegates who sought votes.

Concacaf and Asian Football has developed over the last 15 years African Football has gone backwards.

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posted Jun 26, 2010

Hi Lucifer. I basically agree with that, I was responding more to those arguing in favour of the European countries that missed out.

As for the African players in European leagues, I think that sometimes we make the mistake of simply labelling them all African, when Africa is comprised by almost 50 different countries. there might be a lot of African players, but when you look at them team by team, there aren't that many that can actually put together a squad or even a starting 11 of players who actually start for top level tems.

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posted Jun 26, 2010

Lucifer its not the money from fifa I was talking about. Nearly every park and school here and most other places have goal posts and as a percentage of income a ball here is a grain of sand wheras its luxury for others. Fifa helps but grassroots poverty they can not change. Not everyone is affluent enough to have time in their lives for sports and that was my point on finances. A football costs the same as a beer (even some homeless people here drink) wheras for others its a percentage of total family income if not more not to mention boots e.t.c. Do not forget the ressurgence of Asian football has coincided with their emergence as financial powerhouses and has little to do with the Fifa money you point out.

It is also unfair to say other european nations have done "enough" to automatically be given more places riding on the coattails of Germany and Italy (7 of 9 european world cups between them).

Yes there are nations lagging behind and nobody is calling for a free ride however the Cameroons, Ivorians, Nigerians, Algerians, Egyptians etc have improved. Essien, Eto & Drogba world class and the Toures, Mikels, Ekotto etc play at the Highest level based on talent alone.

On current form it may be easy to label teams useless but England barely scraping though are not looking like world beaters either. It would be silly to judge places on this showing so far. France and Italy are going through a bad patch but Cameroon and Ivory coast are useless? The former is only logical based on past success, teams & leagues in which they play which I thought didnt matter and shouldnt.

How has African football gone backwards pray tell? Today we can point out (within the top african sides) what went/is wrong wheras not long ago we could only point out the very little that was right. For me that is progress.

Would England automatically be expected to do well in Every european world cup..say in Germany? As in Europe African nations have their differences and of course they have more support than usual but thats where that aspect ends.

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posted Jun 26, 2010

Hmm, African football is still lagging behind. I know, I'll reduce their opportunties to perform on the world's highest stage, that's bound to have a positive herp a derp derp

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posted Jun 26, 2010

Is this a Biggots conference or what?...How many european teams started and how many have gone home...compute the proportions and you will see all of you biggots are preaching to the choir.

More than half of the European teams are home also, but you still think that makes you better than everybody else??? Such twisted logic.

How better was Italy for instance compared to Ivory Coast especially given their respective groups. You guys need to look in the mirror sometimes.

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posted Jun 26, 2010

A lot of you biggots here were hoping something will go horribly wrong with the world cup so you could say ...take away from African. When that didn't happen it was all about the this being the worst world cup ever and what have you. Now that the excitement has started, you just have to move on to another of your twisted fantasies-reduce African places right?....

I guess next you may ask Fifa never to allow an African World cup again right?

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posted Jun 26, 2010

Typical approach here. Criticise Africa and you're a bigot LOL.

My OP is not to defend Europe or South America. My point is that because of poor performance why should Africa have 5 automatic places when Asia and Concacaf have fewer places. My belief is that two places should be removed and an additional place given to Asia and Concacaf.

Applemask

Conversly why reward poor performance? Also why deprive Cocacaf and Asia additional places when they deserve it by their showings in the last 3 world cups?

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posted Jun 26, 2010

Commercial considerations apart, what is really scandalous is the number of slots given to Europe. Who really believes that Greece or Denmark could beat, say, Ecuador or Costa Rica?Why not have a pre World Cup tournament like the Confederations Cup, perhaps in the host country, involving, say, the four or five weakest teams from Europe, two fom South America,two from Africa, one from Asia and one from Central/North America? FIFA would make the money they love and it would be certainly fairer than what we have now.

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posted Jun 26, 2010

FIFA can justify this ridiculous & hilarious quota system by using their mind boggling world rankings. When look at the rankings we see a lot of European, Latin & African nations at the top.
World rank 10 Croatia is not even in SA, though they had relatively easy group with bunch of under-performing former Soviet republics !
We see Greece at 13 get humiliated by far less ranking Korea. We see Honduras ranks ahead of both South Korea & Japan, for reasons only known to FIFA. We see Egypt who could not even go beyond the qualifying stages, ranks ahead of the nations that humiliated them in the qualifying stages !!!
Why cant we have a proper Ranking system and allocate quotas to continents accordingly instead of giving them fixed quotas ?

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posted Jun 26, 2010

Lucifer...my mistake was not to have verified youe name in the face place...perhaps then I will have reserved my comments...

Anddon't try to correct yourself, we all read ypur initial post...reduce African places because so and so.....and increase its Europes just because there a few admittedly spectacular teams in Europe plus a lot of rubbish teams...

You see, following your logic, South America may perhaps deserve more places than anybody since Brazil has won more cups than anybody else. As such teams like Ecuador deserve a place no matter what, at the expense of African teams..???

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posted Jun 26, 2010

Lucifer...my mistake was not to have verified your name in the first place...perhaps then I will have reserved my comments...

And don't try to correct yourself, we all read your initial post...reduce African places because so and so.....and increase Europe's just because there a few admittedly spectacular teams in Europe plus a lot of rubbish teams...

You see, following your logic, South America may perhaps deserve more places than anybody since Brazil has won more cups than anybody else. As such teams like Ecuador deserve a place no matter what, at the expense of African teams..???

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posted Jun 26, 2010

MACMOW

I didnt say give Europe more places at African expense, i said take 2 from Africa and give an additional place to both Concacaf and Asia. Please ensure you read what i write before criticising.

Aside from promises for votes, automatic qualifying places are given to Confederations based on past World Cup Tournaments, so is seeding. On that basis it must be reduced.

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posted Jun 26, 2010

Fair enough if that is the logic of the day there is no way Europe justifies the number of teams they have. I think the major problem with the piece to start with is looking at "only" Africa. For arguments sake if you are taking 2 places from Africa Europe should lose at least 4 based on relatively bad (or not so good) performances percentage wise. If the number is based on winners why bother with anybody but the Europeans and S Americans? Heck Just make it a mini tournament between Brazil, Germany and Italy. Its a slippery slope..nothings that black and white and the world cup encompasses so much more. I rarely say this but in this case it is the taking part that counts.

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posted Jun 26, 2010

You have to reduce or increase based on performance but at the same time you have to weight over several world cups rather than reacting to the latest one only.
I think Africa has 6 teams here including the host. For the next world cup that should be back to 5. If again in the next world cup they have only 1 in the L16, or none, there is an argument for going to 4.
Meanwhile South America should be increased from 4.5 to 4.5+ hosts in 2014 and to a straight 5.5 in 2018 if they do well again in 2014.
Central America should be held steady: letting an extra team in could have meant someone weaker than Honduras who are already one of the weakest sides here.
Asia Pacific is about right as well because Japan and South Korea are well ahead of many other Asian countries.

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posted Jun 27, 2010

"Take two away and give an additional place to Concacaf and Asia who seem to be better prepared and bring much more in terms of technique and skill."
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You want to give an additional place to a team that could not qualify ahead of North Korea (0 points) and one to a team that couldn't finish ahead of Honduras (1 point)?!?! doh

The funny thing about you nonsensical statement is that you are using the failure of European teams to perform as an excuse to reduce the number of African teams in the tournament! Most of the damage inflicted on African teams came from the South American contingent...not the Concacaf, Asian or European sides.

The Concacaf winners (USA) were knocked out by Ghana, while North Korea were beat by Ivory Coast. Mexico were held by South Africa and but for the post would have lost their opening game. Algeria held England and were unlucky to lose to Slovenia.

The point is, you are using a World Cup full of contradictions to make a statement that is simply not supported by the results!

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comment by kasbah (U3254321)

posted Jun 27, 2010

Worth remembering the following points:

- Africa will have one less place at the next world cup anyway as South Africa only qualified as hosts, without effecting the 5 they normally get. In any event apart from Cameroon all the African teams were still in contention to qualify from their groups on the last day, at least mathematically;

- South American teams have performed best at this world cup so far but only has 10 members. Giving this continent extra places would effectively make it far too easy to qualify for the world cup;

- Apart from USA and Mexico the quality of teams in North America is fairly low. These two teams qualifying for the knock out rounds is hardly representative of the quality of the continent as a whole - do Jamaica, Trinidad + Tobago and Canada deserve places about Cameroon, Nigeria and South Africa?

- Until 2002 Saudi Arabia were the only Asian team to qualify from the group stage ever before. Since then S Korea and Japan have really improved and I believe this continent deserves an extra spot.

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comment by tiga12 (U5409131)

posted Jun 27, 2010

The quarter finalists’ from the last world cup tournament and the host country automatically qualify for the next world cup.
The other 24 or 23 countries have to qualify through a world qualifying tournament. No regional qualifying tournaments. The qualifying competition for the next world cup starts immediately after the just finished world cup.
This would be fair for all. Let the best teams compete to win the world cup.

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posted Jun 27, 2010

@ The Professor.

Again Europe comes up but ive not given Europe the time of day on this! I suggest reducing African places solely down to African performance, African inability for whatever reason to get out of the Group stage.

To use your analogy on this, USA beat Algeria, Japan beat Cameroon, Australia drew with Ghana and but for a great save...Referee's decision etc.

See where i'm coming from here? Its incidental who beats who, the defining factor is performance as a whole.

To have one qualifier from 6 entrants is a poor performance especially when Concacaf and Asia had 2 from 3 and 4 respectively.

Another fact is that aside from Oceania, Africa has the worst performance by any confederation in World Cup History, but no one can tell me why they shouldremain at 5 automatic places?

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posted Jun 27, 2010

Lucifer38 (U11470978)

I agree with the poor performances by SOME of the African nations especially Algeria, Cameroon and Nigeria..who did make a fist of it when it was a little too late.
Group A - S.A's was on paper very difficult and they did play well and were punished by a lapse in concentration and a good Uruguay team. Do not forget they went out on Goal difference as well. If Africa loses a place based on that, then Europe loses one because of France. It should all be relative. Why should africa lose out but France keep that place? NB SA didnt even qualify through groups and France did (im leaving out the handball for now).

Group G - Ivory Coasts group would have been a tough order for anybody and given the only lost one game to Brazil and has a ridiculous task after N Koreas spanking not to mention the dire thing we called a game between Brazil and Portugal, not many would have done better.

Fair Enough the US beat Algeria (who i must admit had a poor showing), but they topped their Group above England mind and played with some serious passion..and it was Ghana who eventually knocked them out.

I think the thing to remember is also that there are other nations who for some reason or another are not there who may have done better. Senegal, Togo, Angola, Egypt etc who will rue the missed chance at doing better than the poor showers who just may be there next time.
France and Italy will have to improve next time or be replaced by someone better (maybe Russia) so I think its only fair to leave it as is.

My Earlier point on proportions was that out of 5 African nations, some will fail (performances and/or groups) and the chances of unpredictable results are lessened (just the numbers). Europe has 13 and 3 powerhouses so it is easy to say they always justify their places.

Hypothetically speaking would you have called for the Asian conf to lose a place if Japan, and S Korea (their best) had not qualified? That would be unfair.

The joy of the world cup means there is no guarantee on the day and there is no motivation greater than knowing you could have made a better fist of it than those representing you.

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posted Jun 27, 2010

@ Justmyopinion.

Yes you make some valid points here.
Whilst my opinion is that Africa should lose two places and these given to Asia and Concacaf, i also believe Europe should lose a place although it must be remembered that in 2006 all semi finalists were European.

Maybe an even fairer way would be for the WC qualifying tournament to be truly continental, especially in this day and age of travel. This has been muted a couple of times over the last 15 years but has been rejected primarily by Issay Haytou......he who is President of CAF.

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comment by U14534056

posted Jun 27, 2010

It's worth noting here that in the six out of eight groups which had two European sides in them, none saw both those teams qualify for the last sixteen. Greece, Slovenia, Serbia, Denmark, Italy and Switzerland were all eliminated fairly unconvincingly. Of the two groups with only one European side, one saw that team qualify (Portugal in Group G), while in the other that team finished last (France in Group A).

On the basis of the original argument, given that only 50% of European entrants qualified for the second round, surely UEFA should lose places to CONMEBOL (100%) and CONCACAF (66%)?

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comment by kapiri (U14534070)

posted Jun 27, 2010

losing o2 world cups slots by Africa to Asis and Concacaf comrade lucifer38,in my word will not improve the quality of soccer we expect to watch at the tornament.Africa,given space would one day lift the world cup but it's the kind of teams that qualify that's questionable.We ve got great teams like Egypt(African champions,D.R. congo,shouldn't we at least say,the african champions automatically qualify's to the tornament.
i believe this will bring out real teams to participate and not these countries who have wonder boys players at european club level yet are nonenties when it comes to play for their nations.
Like Mr. jay jay okocha said,so long as we rely on engaging foreign couches as our nation team managers(Africa),we will continue to perform like curtain raiser's.Reducing slots ll just worsen things.Ideally ,it's been long overdue, Africa,needed more 5 places.just imagine a continent as large as Africa.
So lets not even think of such ideas.United we stand for Africa

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posted Jun 27, 2010

kapiri (U14534070)
I know this was not the thrust of this post but good point..or reiteration of one. First off there are some good European and and S American managers however the problem is 1 of 2. Either the home grown are judged (sometimes unfairly) on a few performances and passed up for "better" known ones deemed more knowledgable. They may be in some aspects but due to exposure (or lack of), some of the talent will inevitably be missed not to mention the difference in football culture. Playing in europe is not the be all and end all as Brazil has shown time again (i know its Brazil and the abundance of talent is nuts but..) In saying that however with the merry go round of managers we've seen, short term managers do not have the time unearth the best players for the TEAM as opposed to the most famous ones. Capello for instance lived and breathed English football from 2008 wheras Sven got his job on the 28th of March this world cup year and left on the 25th of June (not even a month). A trend im sure is quite prevalent. Its not really an excuse but a reason and despite it Côte d'Ivoire were actually one of the better teams. If these sorts of things are addressed there will be a much better showing as talent is in no way the problem..even those with a serious bias cant deny that...in my opinion

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posted Jun 27, 2010

Absolute gibberish!
France and Italy went out. Nobody said anything about reducing any of Europe's places.

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comment by al (U13298628)

posted Jun 27, 2010

You need some mickey mouse teams to get some goals. Anyway, perhaps talking of Mickey Mouse, should Europe lose a few places with the likes of England only making it past 3 minnow nations!

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posted Jun 27, 2010

I think the real question should be: should FIFA reduce European places. Comparatively, Africa actually did better than Europe in this World Cup:
South Africa got 4 points
Ivory Coast got 4 points
Nigeria and Algeria were in it until the last day, compare that to European powerhouses like France and Italy.
The point is, unlike Europe, African countries are always at a disadvantage at the world cup. First, strong African teams (CIV 2006 & 2010; Nigeria 1994 & 1998) always find themselves in the so called group of death. A coincidence? I don't think so!
Secondly, if Africa had more teams the likelihood that they will play one another in the 1st round goes up, and that means the likelihood that a few will qualify for the next round also goes up.

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posted Jun 28, 2010

why don't you post your comment from what you know or see, must you just come on here and type things you see in your dreams, where is GHANA now, they have knocked out the United States, who defeated Algeria...., well lets see which team is next to go out from Ghana's young footballers.
Besides, Africa has more teams than any other continent and this is where they say football is their religion, so reducing them to how many, would kill the game in their continent.
France, Italy went out, why are you not commenting on reducing the European power house.

: Lucifer38, Try and post some good comments with facts and figures, don't just come here and say things you feel should happen in your dreams

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posted Jun 28, 2010

@real4real

Football is also "their religion" in places like Guatemala, Costa Rica etc. Some may say that limiting entrants for Concacaf could potentially kill their game, whats your point here?

Secondly if you want facts and figures heres some for you.

Africa has had 3 quarter finalists (Cameroon 90, Senegal 02 and Ghana 10.

So have Concacaf, Mexico 70 and 86, USA 02 yet currently have less automatic places.

Asia have gone one better and had a semi finalist and have less places.

Africa has a worse performance in World Cup tournaments but more places? FACT.

You maybe right about reducing European places though, i for one wouldnt have missed Switzerland and Greece for example.

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