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Out now: World Soccer January 2024

Jamie Evans
Jamie Evans

The latest issue of World Soccer is now available to buy online and in shops

From the editor

As an impressionable young football fan in the mid-’90s, I have some wonderful memories of Terry Venables and his Euro ’96 England team. After the Three Lions had failed to qualify for the 1994 World Cup, my first memory of watching England in major tournament action was at the 1996 European Championship, where “El Tel’s” side captured the imagination of the public. The highs (thrashing the Netherlands 4-1) and lows (the agonising penalty-shootout defeat to Germany in the semi-finals), is basically football in a nutshell – from total euphoria to utter despair. The tournament left its mark on me, and I have Venables in part to thank for that.

In addition to paying tribute to Venables in this month’s issue, we also remember the other members of the football family that we’ve lost over the past 12 months, as well as focusing on the people who’ve helped shape the game over the past year. Without giving too much away about the 2023 World Soccer Awards, you can expect to read plenty about Manchester City and Spain’s Women’s World Cup winners over the coming pages after their remarkable years.

In addition to looking back, we also look forward as we comprehensively preview – as always – the Africa Cup of Nations and Asian Cup tournaments. With 48 team profiles, key players to watch for every country, and interviews with Morocco coach Walid Regragui and India boss Igor Stimac, it’s the only definitive guide you need ahead of the January kick-offs.

Elsewhere in the issue, we cover the four corners of the globe: from Euro 2024 qualification to South America’s 2026 World Cup preliminaries; wrap-ups of the league seasons in South Korea, Japan and Norway; plus reviews of the NWSL and MLS play-offs in the United States. With the draws also complete for the Copa America and Euros, there is already eager anticipation for 2024.

Stephen Fishlock, Group Editor

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THE WORLD THIS MONTH
4 In pictures
11 The month in numbers
12 Keir Radnedge Terry Venables tribute
14 Jonathan Wilson Jude Bellingham
15 On the radar
16 Ins & outs
17 ESM XI

FEATURES
18 6 Of The Best Under-17 World Cup talents
20 Euro 2024 Shock qualifiers

AWARDS & PEOPLE OF THE YEAR
24 Results
28 Men’s World Player of the Year
30 Men’s World Manager & Team of the Year
32 Women’s World Player & Team of the Year
33 Women’s World Manager of the Year
34 People of the Year
39 Farewell to…

AFCON 2023 PREVIEW
42 Overview & schedule
44 Face To Face Walid Regragui
46 Group guides & team profiles

ASIAN CUP 2023 PREVIEW
52 Overview & schedule
54 Face To Face Igor Stimac
56 Group guides & team profiles

WOMEN’S FOOTBALL
62 NWSL review

WORLD SERVICE
66 Europe Euro 2024 qualifying review
68 South America 2026 World Cup qualifying update
70 Africa 2026 World Cup qualifying update
72 Asia 2026 World Cup qualifying update
74 CONCACAF Nations League review
76 United States MLS Cup review
78 Japan J. League review
80 South Korea K-League review
82 Africa African Football League review
84 Norway Eliteserien review
86 Europe Summer leagues review
88 Maldives

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