Argentina replaces Indonesia as U20 World Cup host

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — Argentina has replaced Indonesia as the host of the Under-20 World Cup next month.

FIFA announced the decision on Monday, just over two weeks after Indonesia was stripped of the hosting rights.

Protests in Muslim-majority Indonesia against hosting the Israel team forced the move, although FIFA never specified its reason, merely saying Indonesia lost the tournament “due to the current circumstances.” Indonesia does not have formal diplomatic relations with Israel.

Argentina, the record six-time champion, failed to qualify for the U20 World Cup but FIFA decided it will take Indonesia’s spot as host.

FIFA President Gianni Infantino said in a statement that “the country of the defending World Cup champions will open its doors to the big stars of tomorrow’s world soccer.” He also thanked local authorities “for hosting this great tournament with so little time.”

Argentina economy minister Sergio Massa said it signed “all the international deals that FIFA demanded from our government.”

The tournament draw is scheduled for Friday in Zurich. The event runs from May 20-June 11.


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