The FIFA executive committee have announced, in Zurich, that Russia will host the 2018 World Cup winning out over Britain, Spain/Portugal and Holland/Belgium. They also announced that U.S.A. has lost out to Qatar who will host the 2022 event.
Many are still reeling from the USA news as Qatar has never qualified for the competition. It will be the first Middle Eastern Arab nation to host the World Cup. This choice signals FIFA desire to engage the Muslim world. Qatar, with just 1.7 million inhabitants, is also the smallest nation to host the event in 2022.
Closer down the line, in 2018, Russia will also have their first chance to host the event. Despite Britain’s roller-coaster campaign FIFA president, Sepp Blatter, announced the results of the 22-member vote by the governing body’s executive committee.
Having been handed the World Cup by Blatter, Russian deputy prime minister Igor Shuvalov said “You have entrusted us with the Fifa World Cup for 2018 and I can promise, we all can promise, you will never regret it.
“Let us make history together.”
According to sources close to the English they did not make it to the final round. It’s thought that their bid suffered following the corruption investigation into FIFA by BBC current affairs show “Panorama” and the Sunday Times over the last two months.
Chair of London United, Boris Johnson said the news was “tremendously disappointing”.
He said “We put together a cracking bid, our technical specification was top notch and our stadiums would have been packed to the rafters…Londoners love football. This is a blow but we have achieved a great deal with this bid and we have much to look ahead to.”