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UEFA chief Michel Platini backs calls for more teams at football World Cup

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UEFA chief Michel Platini backs calls for more teams at football World Cup

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UEFA chief and former French star Michel Platini has called for the World Cup finals to be expanded.

He wants 40 teams at the tournament from 2018, up from 32 now.

But he insists it would not reduce the number of European teams at the finals – the idea is to open the event to more African and Asian teams.

Currently Europe sends 13 of the 32 teams, against five from Africa and up to five for Asia.

FIFA President Sepp Blatter wrote last week that Africa and Asia deserved more representation at soccer’s showpiece event because they had more member associations than Europe and South America.

“It’s good for everybody,” Platini told Britain’s Times newspaper in an interview. “I totally agree with Mr Blatter that we need more African and Asian (teams). But instead of taking away some European, we have to go to 40 teams.

“We can add two African, two Asiatic, two American, one Oceania and one from Europe.”

European and South American countries have won all 19 versions of the World Cup.