Chelsea is set to receive $60 million after being confirmed by FIFA to qualify for the first edition of the expanded Club World Cup in 2025.
In December 2022, FIFA President Gianni Infantino announced changes to the Club World Cup format – a tournament that will be played like the World Cup for national teams – from 2025. Accordingly, the 32 clubs participating in the Club World Cup will be divided into eight groups, each group consisting of four teams with the top two teams from each group advancing to the knockout stage.
According to The Sunsport, in a meeting on March 14, 2023, in the Rwandan capital, Kigali, FIFA officials agreed on the qualification format for the 2025 Club World Cup, which may be held in China. Europe will have the largest share with 12 spots, and the qualifiers will take place over four years from the 2020-2021 season to the 2023-2024 season. This means that the four Champions League winners during these seasons and the top eight teams in the four-year UEFA ranking system will qualify for the 2025 Club World Cup with a huge reward.
The last two Champions League winners, Real Madrid, and Chelsea are sure to participate. According to the rules, no European country can have more than two spots in the Club World Cup 2025 through the UEFA ranking system. But in the current situation, Liverpool and Man City will be eligible, alongside Chelsea, who have already secured their spot.
However, if Liverpool fails to qualify for the European Cup next season, it will open the door for Man Utd to replace them in the 2025 Club World Cup by directly entering the Champions League qualifiers.
FIFA is also improving the smaller version of the current Club World Cup – the tournament will continue to be held annually but will be rebranded and the Champions League winners will advance directly to the final.
According to Sunsport, Chelsea’s qualification for the 2025 Club World Cup will earn them $60 million. In addition, “The Blues” will earn more bonus money if they become champions. The current reward for winning the Club World Cup is $5 million.
Stamford Bridge’s owner spent $530 million on strengthening the team after being taken over by a consortium led by billionaire Todd Boehly and Clearlake Capital in the summer of 2022. In the summer of 2022, “The Blues” spent the most in the Premier League, spending $300 million to bring in Pierre Emerick Aubameyang, Wesley Fofana, Marc Cucurella, Raheem Sterling, Kalidou Koulibaly, Denis Zakaria, Carney Chukwuemeka, and Gabriel Slonina.
In the January 2023 transfer window, Chelsea continued to spend heavily by loaning Joao Felix from Atletico and signing Mykhailo Mudryk ($119 million), Benoit Badiashile ($41 million), Noni Madueke ($40 million), Andrey Santos ($15 million), David Datro Fofana ($15 million), and Enzo Fernandez ($130 million).
According to Theo The Athletic, Chelsea is planning to streamline their team during the summer of 2023. Among them, Tiemoue Bakayoko, Marcus Bettinelli, Nathan Baxter, Ethan Ampadu, and N’Golo Kante are likely to leave on a free transfer, while Cesar Azpilicueta, Christian Pulisic, Ben Chilwell, Aubameyang, Loftus-Cheek, and Mason Mount are in the need of liquidation.
If this team streamlining plan is successful, along with the money received from the Club World Cup, Chelsea will ease some of the pressure from the Financial Fair Play (FFP) rule after spending heavily in the last two transfer windows.