I have simulated about 10 years into the future to see how the expanded Club World Cup format works in game. I am delighted it is included of course, but I have concerns about the way teams are allocated to the tournament,
Firstly, the correct process for qualification for the 2021 edition can be seen in this article.: https://apnews.com/9604791fe91547db96ce19ed5b97012b
This should be implemented correctly. (I don't believe it is currently)
However, this process only works for 2021. There is no official process for 2025 onward, so I will suggest what I believe is the most realistic process for qualification from 2025 onward.
From what I have gathered, in the game, qualification from Europe goes to the Champions League winners of the previous 4 years and then the next best teams in the coefficient list are added to fill up the eight slots. In reality however, I have seen that the Champions League and Europa League winners of the past 4 years will be used. In cases where there are teams winning multiple titles within the four year period, the free slots should go to the most recent Champions League runner up, and then the runners up before that, and so on (up to 4 years). If going through this still doesn't yield the full 8 teams, then going to the coefficient table for the next best teams may be appropriate.
SOUTH AMERICA: (6)
From what I have gathered in South America, in the game, qualification is first determined by the winners in the past 4 years of the Copa Libertadores, and then the final two slots are given to the two South American teams with the highest reputation. In reality, the Copa Sudamericana is being also used to help determine the six participants. The six slots should go to the four previous winners of the Copa Libertadores, and then the last two slots going to two winners of a playoff between the four most recent Copa Sudamericana winners. Again, adjustments may have to be made in the case of teams that win multiple titles. For instance, if only 2 different teams have won the Copa Libertadores over the past 4 seasons, then all 4 Copa Sudamericana winners from the past 4 years will qualify. Similarly, if one team wins the Copa Sudamericana twice during the time period, then they should not have to playoff against teams that have won it only once.
AFRICA, ASIA, NORTH AMERICA: (3 each)
As far as I can tell, in the game, for these continents, it will simply take the first three winners of the continental competition since the last Club World Cup (i.e. it will ignore the most recent winners of the continental competition unless there is a repeat winner at some point). This is highly unfair to the most recent winners of the continental competition. I believe there should instead be playoffs between the last four winners in each continent to determine the three teams that qualify. Again, there may need to be changes if there are repeat winners of the continental competitions. For instance, if there are only 3 unique champions in the last four years, then simply qualify all three to the tournament. If there have been only 2 unique champions, then maybe the most recent runner up should qualify (similar to Europe).
In the game, the winners of the OFC Champions League directly after the Club World Cup will qualify for the next tournament. For instance, the winners of the 2022 OFC Champions League are qualifying for the 2025 Club World Cup. This creates the unfair situation that the 2023, 2024 and 2025 OFC Champions League tournaments are not at all relevant for qualification. In my save, Team Wellington had won three of the last four Champions Leagues and yet didn't qualify for the CWC because they didn't win the right one out the four most recent editions to qualify. I think that the team that wins the most titles over the last 4 years should be Oceania's qualifier. If two or four teams have won the same amount of titles in the last four years, then playoffs should be played to determine Oceania's representative, similar to other confederations.
However, to mimic reality, Oceania's representative should have to playoff against the current champions of the Host Nation (as will occur in 2021) to reach the proper competition. It should be considered when creating this format that it may be possible for the host nation representative to have already qualified via their confederation, and so the host nation's slot may be passed down to the runner up (or potentially even futher down the table) of the most recent domestic season.
Additionally, there is a lot of evidence that there will be a limit of 2 participants from a certain country in this competition. This is confirmed for the Asia, North America and Africa regions. This should also be attempted to be put in the game as well. It could potentially be the case in Europe as well but there is no solid confirmation of this so you don't need to do this.
Finally, FIFA have confirmed that the 2021 CWC will be in China, NOT Qatar as it is in my game. I have noticed that the host nation of the CWC is always the same as the host nation of the upcoming World Cup. This is perhaps understandable why you would think that, since the tournament is effectively replacing the Confederations Cup which always was hosted in the same country as the World Cup. However, we can clearly see that it is not going to follow this pattern, so the host selection from the CWC should be separate from the host selection of the World Cup.
Thanks for reading this behemoth of a post