Saudi Arabia and Australia want the event.
FIFA, the governing body of international football or soccer, has handed out its men’s 2030 World Cup crown jewel event to Morocco, Spain and Portugal along with “celebratory” matches in Uruguay, Argentina and Paraguay to mark the 100th anniversary of the event. Now it is onto the bidding for the 2034 World Cup and the people who want the 2034 event better have all their paperwork ready for FIFA to review. Saudi Arabia, which is spending a lot of money on sports particularly in boxing, golf and soccer, wants the 2034 World Cup. Football Australia, state and federal governments and potential Asian co-hosts must have their bid ready on October 31st.
Football Australia chief executive James Johnson said, “We acknowledge FIFA’s communication regarding the FIFA World Cup 2034 and we are encouraged that after the hugely successful FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 and FIFA Women’s World Cup Australia and New Zealand 2023, the football family of Asia and Oceania will once again have the opportunity to showcase their ability to welcome the world and host the best FIFA tournaments.” FIFA might not appreciate that Victoria, Australia withdrew its bid for the 2026 Commonwealth Games because the local government did not like the financial projections of hosting a major, international sports event. But Australia is hosting the 2032 Summer Olympics. The Saudis are setting up a multibillion-dollar company that will invest in sports. The Saudis have been accused of human rights abuses but it is not stopping them spending money on sports. Somebody invented the term “sportswashing” which describes someone or some country using sports to improve a reputation to take attention away from controversial subjects. Saudi Arabian government officials have admitted that they don’t care if anyone thinks sportswashing is a bad thing. FIFA certainly doesn’t care about Saudi Arabia’s sportswashing. There is money to be made.
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