The decision was made after a meeting between FIFA President Gianni Infantino and the President of the Football Association of Indonesia (PSSI), Erick Thohir.
According to FIFA’s official website, “FIFA has decided, due to the current situation, to cancel Indonesia’s status as host for the FIFA U-20 World Cup 2023.” The statement was released on Wednesday night, March 29, 2023. FIFA explained that a replacement host would be announced as soon as possible, with the tournament dates remaining unchanged.
Furthermore, FIFA has stated that potential sanctions against PSSI may be decided in the next stage. FIFA is committed to helping PSSI, working closely with the Indonesian government under the leadership of President Joko Widodo, in the process of transforming Indonesian football after the tragedy that occurred in October 2022.
“The FIFA team members will continue to be present in Indonesia in the coming months and will provide the necessary assistance to PSSI, under the leadership of President Thohir,” the statement read.
FIFA has also said that a meeting between the FIFA President and the PSSI President to discuss further issues will be scheduled in the near future.
The cancellation of Indonesia’s hosting rights for the U-20 World Cup is a major blow for the country’s football development and the tourism industry, which was expecting a significant boost from the event.
Previously, some parties opposed Israel’s participation in the event due to Indonesia’s lack of diplomatic relations with Israel, while others did not see it as an issue since it is a FIFA event.
Indonesian President Joko Widodo addressed the issue, stating that Indonesia has no diplomatic ties with Israel but must abide by FIFA’s regulations as the event’s organizer.
He sent the Chairman of the Indonesian Football Association (PSSI), Erick Thohir, to meet with FIFA President Gianni Infantino to find a solution to the problem.
However, some parties, including the governor of Bali, strongly opposed Israel’s presence, leading to the cancellation of the drawing for the event in Bali.
As a result, FIFA announced the cancellation of Indonesia’s status as the host country for the 2023 FIFA U-20 World Cup. This decision has raised concerns about Indonesia’s future as a host country and potential sanctions from FIFA.