World football’s governing body has handed a massive boost to South Africa and other teams after making an important recommendation to the Bureau of the FIFA Council.
With the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo being moved to 2021 given the Coronavirus crisis, there had been questions asked regarding whether the players that helped nations qualify for the football aspect of the games would be able to feature to the rules in place.
Given the fact that the tournament is an U23 competition – aside from three allowed overage players, there was some confusion over whether the likes of Tercious Malepe, Teboho Mokoena and others would be allowed to partake as they turn 24 before the competition gets underway.
FIFA’s ‘FIFA-Confederations working group’ appear to be against that happening though, and are keen to keep the age range the same as originally planned, which would mean that any player eligible in 2020 would still be eligible in 2021.
Recommendations from FIFA to the Bureau regarding the Olympics, stated -
“Concerning the postponed men’s Olympic Football Tournament (preliminary and final competitions of the Tournament):
“To keep the eligibility criteria originally foreseen (Players born on or after 01.01.1997 and three additional players).”
They also said in their statement that ‘the FIFA-Confederations working group will continue to hold discussions on a regular basis as the situation evolves’.