Four independent members
The start of FIFA without home nations So it was disastrous. In order to reintegrate these unions, they were all given the opportunity to become independent members, rather than just the UK. In doing so, the UK had not one vote in FIFA, but four. At the current number of 211 members, this no longer matters, but at the beginning of the last century, there were not even ten countries affiliated with FIFA. Thus Wales, England, Scotland and Ireland gained enormous influence.
Then there was something else: FIFA recognized the International Football Association Board (IFAB) as the guardian of the rules of the game. Wales, England, Scotland and Ireland each received 12.5% of the vote from this organisation, making up half of the total. The other half was for FIFA itself. Since the rule change only occurs with a minimum of 75% of the vote, FIFA is not in a position to decide on this independently. A union always needs the support of at least two home nations: 50% + 12.5% + 12.5%.
Under these terms, the four British federations actually joined FIFA between 1905 and 1911. The only thing that changed is that in the 1920s, Ireland was divided into an independent country and Northern Ireland, which is still part of the United Kingdom.
This is why the Inner Nations are critical to changing the rules. That is why the Netherlands will play against Wales tomorrow and not against the United Kingdom. Which is why Wales and England are in the same group for the upcoming World Championships.
Photo Caption: The 1988 World Cup Qualifiers between Holland and Wales. Photo: Kroos, Rob C/Anivo, National Archives†
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