With FIFA stepping up to support the global football community in a time of unprecedented crisis, the organisation’s strategic body provided expert oversight to ensure the maximum impact of that support. Like much of the world, as a result of the global pandemic, the FIFA Council had to adapt its working practices and met exclusively by videoconference in 2020.
The Council made important decisions for the future of football, chief of which was the selection of Australia and New Zealand as hosts of the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023™.
The Council approved several measures responding to COVID-19 and helping football around the world in the face of the pandemic and its aftermath, namely the FIFA COVID-19 Relief Plan, as well as the 2021 annual budget and the revised budget for the 2019-2022 cycle, following a comprehensive assessment of the financial impact of the coronavirus.
On the eve of the 70ᵗʰ FIFA Congress, the Council ratified a number of decisions taken by the Bureau of the FIFA Council, including the approval of the regulations governing the FIFA COVID‑19 Relief Plan, which set out the conditions for accessing the relevant financial support from FIFA, and important changes to the men’s and women’s international match calendars.
President Infantino also reported on the virtual summits with the member association presidents that had taken place in July and August.
The Council passed groundbreaking reforms to better protect female players and football coaches. The new rules established new global minimum standards for female players, particularly in relation to maternity, while specific provisions set minimum standards for the employment conditions of coaches, recognising the crucial role they play in the game.
Following a comprehensive consultation process by the FIFA-Confederations COVID-19 Working Group with football stakeholders, the Council passed a series of additional amendments to the men’s and women’s international match calendars.
The Council also heard a report from the FIFA Medical Committee, which had established a working group to advise on the strategy to tackle concussion in football.