At the finals in the USA, Canada and Mexico with 48 nations for the first time, a total of 104 games will be kicked off in a new format according to a FIFA decision in Kigali, 40 more than at the previous World Cups since 1998.
The model provides for twelve groups of four in the preliminary round, which already accounts for 72 games. The first and second in the group as well as the eight best third in the group advance. This is followed by 32 more games. At the end of 2022, the last and compact finals in Qatar were held in 29 days, world champions Argentina needed seven games to win the title. For each team, the format change will only add a maximum of one game. The World Cup period (tournament plus preparation phase) estimated in the football calendar is 56 days in the range of the final rounds in 2010, 2014 and 2018.
Due to the high number of games, a good 40 tournament days should be necessary.