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Page last updated at 11:40 GMT, Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Africa's 2014 World Cup future to be decided by Fifa

Ghana celebrate at South Africa 2010
Ghana were the only African team to get to the knock-out stages in 2010

Football's world governing body Fifa is meeting to decide how many places each continent receives at the next World Cup in 2014.

Six African nations took part in the 2010 tournament, because South Africa were the hosts.

The continent will almost certainly be cut back to five representatives for the next finals in Brazil.

There is a chance the figure could drop further, with other regions pressing hard for more places.

Africa's performance in 2010, where of the continent's contenders only Ghana made it out of the knock-out stages, will count against it.

Political pressures and lobbying in the expected tussle between incumbent Fifa president Sepp Blatter and his likely challenger Mohamed Bin Hammam will also have an impact.

Bin Hammam has been pushing for an increased representation from his Asian Confederation - which had four places plus a play-off against Oceania for South Africa.

Concacaf, the North and Central American and Caribbean region, is also pressing especially hard for more places than the current three plus a play-off spot.

South America is likely to get an extra berth because Brazil are the hosts.

Fifa is set to announce the decision at a news conference on Thursday, following a two-day meeting in Zurich.

Fifa is also going to announce Canada as the hosts of the 2015 Women's World Cup - they are the only contenders after Zimbabwe pulled out of the running.

In addition, Ghana will find out whether it will host the U17 World Cup in 2013 and the U17 women's competition in 2014 while Tunisia has bid for the U17 World Cup in 2015 and the U20 event in 2015.

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see also
Africa to learn World Cup fate
23 Feb 11 |  African
Zimbabwe withdraws World Cup bid
01 Mar 11 |  African

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