Kylian Mbappe and Robert Lewandowski have raised concerns over FIFA’s proposal to hold a World Cup every two years, citing the physical strain the move could have on players taking part.
The idea, being backed by FIFA’s president Gianni Infantino and chief of global football development Arsene Wenger, is proposing the change as part of a revamp of the football calendar.
At a summit last week, world football’s governing body told representatives from its 211 member associations £3.3billion in additional revenue would be generated from holding a biennial World Cup.
But the concept has been met by fierce resistance particularly from UEFA and South American governing body CONMEBOL, who feel the alteration would devalue the competition.
Speaking at the Globe Soccer Awards in Dubai, Paris Saint-Germain and France forward Mbappe, who scored four goals to help his country win the tournament in Russia three-and-a-half years ago, said the proposal could undermine the prestige of the competition and place further pressure on players.
“My opinion is that the World Cup is the World Cup, it’s a special thing because it is every four years. If you have it every two years, it can start to be normal and I want to say that is not normal”
Bayern Munich and Poland’s Lewandowski cited player welfare as a concern amid a packed playing schedule at international and club level.
The 33-year-old added: “We have so many games every year, so many tough weeks, not only the games but preparation for the season, preparation for the big tournaments.
“If you want to offer something special, something different, we also need a break.
“If we have a World Cup every two years, the expectation is the time where footballers play at a high level will go down … It is physically and mentally impossible.”