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FIFA Unveils Ingenious Plan for World Cup 2026 – Teams Set to Conquer in ‘Clusters’!




Gianni Infantino unveils plans to ease travel and create optimal conditions for teams and fans

In a groundbreaking announcement, FIFA President Gianni Infantino unveiled a visionary plan for the 2026 World Cup, set to be co-hosted by the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Recognizing the logistical challenges posed by the expanded tournament, which will feature 48 teams for the first time, Infantino revealed that teams will be based in regional clusters during the early rounds.

Addressing a press conference in Los Angeles where the official logo and branding for the tournament were also unveiled, Infantino emphasized the need to accommodate the vast scale of the 2026 finals. With three countries involved, each geographically substantial, the president acknowledged the complexities of travel distances, time zones, and climatic variations.

To ensure that teams and fans experience optimal conditions, Infantino outlined the clustering approach, whereby teams will be grouped in specific regions based on the draw. This arrangement aims to minimize extensive travel, especially in the initial stages of the competition, and provide an environment conducive to performance.

Infantino drew inspiration from the successful logistics of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, where players could return to their beds within an hour after a match. Although some travel will be inevitable in 2026, FIFA is committed to coordinating arrangements and ensuring the best possible conditions for participating teams.

The decision to cluster teams in regions emerged from discussions held at a recent meeting in Doha with the 32 coaches involved in the previous World Cup. Infantino hopes that this innovative approach will build upon the legacy of the highly influential 1994 finals, hosted by the United States, which played a pivotal role in establishing Major League Soccer in North America.

Anticipating the impact of the 2026 tournament, Infantino expressed his aspiration for soccer to become the premier sport in North America. As FIFA rolled out the official branding at a star-studded gala event at the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles, former US international Alexi Lalas, a prominent figure from the 1994 World Cup, voiced his support for the regional clustering concept.

Acknowledging the convenience enjoyed by players through charter flights, Lalas emphasized the significance of reducing six-hour trips and time zone changes. The regional approach, he noted, would fundamentally enhance the competition and create a more favorable environment for teams.

Infantino’s announcement signals FIFA’s commitment to innovative solutions in overcoming the logistical hurdles of hosting an expanded World Cup across multiple countries. As excitement builds for the 2026 tournament, soccer enthusiasts eagerly anticipate witnessing the implementation of this pioneering approach, which has the potential to shape the future of global football competitions.

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8 South Africa venues confirmed for 2027 Cricket World Cup




south africa cricket world cup 2027

Eight venues in South Africa have been confirmed for the 2027 Cricket World Cup, according to Cricket South Africa chief executive Pholetsi Moseki.

In addition to the South African grounds, matches will also be played in Zimbabwe and Namibia, who will co-host the tournament.

Moseki told the South African News24 website that the eight South African venues had been chosen for what he described as “scientific” reasons, including proximity to an airport and the availability of hotel rooms.

South Africa’s regular Test venues – the Wanderers in Johannesburg, SuperSport Park in Centurion, Newlands in Cape Town, Kingsmead in Durban and St George’s Park in Gqeberha – will all host matches.

The Mangaung Oval in Bloemfontein, Boland Park in Paarl and Buffalo Park in East London will be the other venues.

All eight grounds were used when South Africa previously hosted the World Cup in 2003.

Benoni, Potchefstroom and Kimberley also staged matches in 2003 but were not included for the 2027 edition.

The tournament is scheduled for October and November 2027.


Venue guide

Wanderers Stadium, Johannesburg: South Africa’s premier venue with a capacity of about 30,000. Hosted the finals of the 2003 World Cup and inaugural 2007 T20 World Cup and a semi-final of the 2009 Champions Trophy.

Newlands, Cape Town: The scenic ground with a backdrop of Table Mountain has hosted more Test matches (60) than any other South African ground. Was the venue for the 2023 Women’s T20 World Cup final and a 2007 T20 World Cup semi-final.

SuperSport Park, Centurion: The purpose-built stadium outside Pretoria hosted the 2009 Champions Trophy final.

Kingsmead, Durban: Semi-final venue for the 2003 World Cup and 2007 T20 World Cup.

St George’s Park, Gqeberha: South Africa’s oldest Test ground. Hosted a semi-final in the 2003 World Cup.

Boland Park, Paarl: Another scenic venue in the Cape Winelands. Along with the five grounds above, a centre for a team in the SA20 franchise competition. Hosted three matches in the 2003 World Cup.

Springbok Park, Bloemfontein: Five Test matches have been played in Bloemfontein as well as two matches in the Super Six stage of the 2003 World Cup.

Buffalo Park, East London: Infrequently used for men’s international matches in recent years but it has hosted one Test match as well as being a Super Six venue in 2003.


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Cricket Star Shakib Al Hasan Enters Footwear Business



Shakib Al Hasan

Star cricketer and Member of Parliament Shakib Al Hasan is set to venture into the footwear business with the launch of a new brand, “SAH 75,” in collaboration with Step Footwear, one of the country’s largest non-leather footwear companies.

Under this joint venture, Step Footwear will handle the manufacturing, selling, and marketing of wearable products for the “SAH 75” brand. The products will be available in 95 Step Footwear showrooms nationwide. Shamim Kabir, Managing Director of Step Footwear, confirmed this collaboration.

The formal announcement of the new business venture is scheduled to take place at a hotel in the capital on Sunday.

Sources indicate that Step Footwear will produce certain shoes under the “SAH 75” brand, while additional products will be sourced from both domestic and international markets. These products will be sold through Step’s showrooms.

The product range under the “SAH 75” brand will include shoes, sandals, boots, bats, pads, sportswear, and other wearables.

Step Footwear operates three factories in Narsingdi, where two of them focus on producing trolleys, bags, backpacks, and the third factory specializes in shoemaking equipment. All three factories are currently in full production.

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Major Reshuffling as 22 Companies, Including Khulna Printing, Yeakin Polymers, Enter ‘Z’ Category Deals



z category

In a recent development, ten companies have undergone a change in their categories, transitioning to the ‘Z’ category in the Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE). The information comes from official sources from DSE.

The companies affected by this reclassification include Alltex Industries, Aramit Cement, Aziz Pipes, Delta Spinning, FAS Finance and Investment Limited, GBB Power Limited, Intech Limited, International Leasing, Keya Cosmetics, Khulna Printing, National Tea, Premier Leasing, Regent Textile, Ring Shine Textile, Safko Spinning, Standard Ceramics, Dacca Dyeing, Union Capital, Uttara Finance and Investment Limited, Yeakin Polymer, and Zahintex Industries Limited.

Effective from today (18th February), trading for these companies in the ‘Z’ category has commenced.

Sources reveal that these companies have been transferred to the ‘Z’ category due to their inability to hold the annual general meeting (AGM) within the stipulated time, remaining closed for more than six months, and having higher liabilities than assets.

Before this update, there were 27 companies in the ‘Z’ category at the DSE. With the addition of 22 more companies, the total number of companies in the ‘Z’ category has now reached 49.

It is noteworthy that companies failing to hold the AGM within the specified time, remaining closed for more than six months, or having higher liabilities than assets are moved to the ‘Z’ category after undergoing the necessary scrutiny and reevaluation.

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