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FIFA announce bizarre new 20-team international tournament that Saudi Arabia will co-host

FIFA announce bizarre new 20-team international tournament that Saudi Arabia will co-host

FIFA have announced a new tournament.

FIFA have announced a brand-new international tournament that will be co-hosted by Saudi Arabia.

With the Africa Cup of Nations and the Asian Cup already in the books, fans of international football are beginning to look ahead to the European Championships and the Copa America this summer.

With the next World Cup scheduled for 2026, fans have got a while to wait until they can see teams from across the world competing.

Or have they?

But for those eager to see something a little different, FIFA have some good news.

A new tournament called the FIFA Series will be trialled at the end of March, with 20 teams placed into five groups of four to play friendlies.

All games in each group will take place in one location, with Saudi Arabia hosting two groups and Algeria, Azerbaijan and Sri Lanka hosting one each.

Andorra, Bulgaria and Azerbaijan are the three teams from UEFA that will take part in the trial.

Minnows Andorra will play three friendlies in Algeria, one against the hosts as well as meetings with Bolivia and South Africa.

Azerbaijan, another host, will face Bulgaria, Mongolia and Tanzania.

Pacific island Vanuatu, ranked 170th in the world by FIFA, will take part in the Saudi Arabian group.

"The FIFA Series is a really positive step forward for national-team football at global level," said FIFA President Gianni Infantino.

"Our member associations have been telling us for a long time now of their desire to test themselves against their counterparts from all around the world. And now they can do so within the current Men’s International Match Calendar.

"More meaningful matches will enable far more valuable footballing interaction for players, teams and fans, and will make a concrete contribution to the development of the game."

The group stage line up is as follows:

FIFA Series Algeria: Algeria, South Africa, Bolivia, Andorra.

FIFA Series Azerbaijan: Azerbaijan, Mongolia, Bulgaria, Tanzania.

FIFA Series Saudi Arabia A: Cape Verde, Cambodia, Equatorial Guinea, Guyana.

FIFA Series Saudi Arabia B: Bermuda, Brunei, Guinea, Vanuatu.

FIFA Series Sri Lanka: Sri Lanka Bhutan, Central African Republic, Papua New Guinea.

Featured Image Credit: Getty

Topics: FIFA, Football, Saudi Arabia, Gianni Infantino, Football World Cup