Belfast Telegraph

Northern Ireland sports fans would make 2030 World Cup special, says Michael O'Neill

Michael O'Neill says that playing a part in hosting the 2030 World Cup finals would be 'huge' for Northern Ireland.
Michael O'Neill says that playing a part in hosting the 2030 World Cup finals would be 'huge' for Northern Ireland.

The prospect of the World Cup coming to Northern Ireland has been raised as the English FA signaled it is considering bidding for the 2030 tournament.

The Football Association’s board has approved a feasibility study into becoming Europe’s only bid for the tournament. And the government's preferred option is for any bid to be on the basis of a home nations joint approach - something governing body FIFA would likely prefer.

The IFA welcomed the move, saying it would support any potential bid.

And national boss Michael O'Neill said it would be something sport lovers in Northern Ireland would relish if it became a reality.

"I think it's positive," he said. "It's a long way off - I'm not sure I'll be in charge at that point in time but it's a positive thing.

"We've a fantastic stadium here (at Windsor Park). Certainly in the UK, they have the stadiums to host the World Cup, there's no doubt about that. If that was to be the case, it would certainly be nice to have a part of that.

"It would be huge. There's no better example than the recent World Cup in Russia. People’s perception of Russia has changed somewhat in terms of how their people embraced the tournament."

O'Neill also backed local sports fans to make the event extra special.

He continued: "To get an event of that stature and to be part of it would be huge for Northern Ireland. The public here are brilliant at backing any major sporting event – you’ll see that in a few weeks when Carl Frampton fights here (at Windsor) – so it would be great.”

England won the only World Cup it has ever hosted in 1966 but lost with bids for the 2006 and 2018 competitions.

A fan of Russia prior to the round of 16 match between Spain and Russia at the 2018 soccer World Cup at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, Russia, Sunday, July 1, 2018. (AP Photo/Antonio Calanni)
A fan of Russia prior to the round of 16 match between Spain and Russia at the 2018 soccer World Cup at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, Russia, Sunday, July 1, 2018. (AP Photo/Antonio Calanni)
France's fans cheer as they arrive prior to the Russia 2018 World Cup final football match between France and Croatia at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on July 15, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Alexander NEMENOV / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADS ALEXANDER NEMENOV/AFP/Getty Images
Dogs bearing the colors of the French national flag are pictured prior to the start of the Russia 2018 World Cup final football match between France and Croatia, in Marseille, southern France on July 15, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / BORIS HORVATBORIS HORVAT/AFP/Getty Images
France's fans cheer as they arrive prior to the Russia 2018 World Cup final football match between France and Croatia at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on July 15, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Alexander NEMENOV / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADS ALEXANDER NEMENOV/AFP/Getty Images
Dogs bearing the colors of the French national flag are pictured prior to the start of the Russia 2018 World Cup final football match between France and Croatia, in Marseille, southern France on July 15, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / BORIS HORVATBORIS HORVAT/AFP/Getty Images
A supporter arrives ahead of the Russia 2018 World Cup final football match between France and Croatia at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on July 15, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Jewel SAMAD / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADS JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images
A France's and Croatia's supporter pose ahead of the Russia 2018 World Cup final football match between France and Croatia at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on July 15, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Kirill KUDRYAVTSEVKIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images
A Croatia's supporter poses ahead of the Russia 2018 World Cup final football match between France and Croatia at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on July 15, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Kirill KUDRYAVTSEVKIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images
A Croatia's supporter poses ahead of the Russia 2018 World Cup final football match between France and Croatia at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on July 15, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Kirill KUDRYAVTSEVKIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images
France's supporters pose ahead of the Russia 2018 World Cup final football match between France and Croatia at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on July 15, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Kirill KUDRYAVTSEVKIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images
A France's supporter poses ahead of the Russia 2018 World Cup final football match between France and Croatia at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on July 15, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Kirill KUDRYAVTSEVKIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images
A France's supporter waves his national flag ahead of the Russia 2018 World Cup final football match between France and Croatia at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on July 15, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Kirill KUDRYAVTSEVKIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images
A man wearing a tee-shirt with Croatian national colours arranges paprika at a market in downtown Zagreb on July 15, 2018, ahead of the 2018 Russia World Cup final football match between Croatia and France, the first final World Cup match ever in the history of Croatia. / AFP PHOTO / ANDREJ ISAKOVICANDREJ ISAKOVIC/AFP/Getty Images
A Croatia fan in Red Square ahead of the FIFA World Cup, Semi Final match at the Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday July 11, 2018. See PA story WORLDCUP Croatia. Photo credit should read: Aaron Chown/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use. No use with any unofficial 3rd party logos. No manipulation of images. No video emulation.
MOSCOW, RUSSIA - JULY 11: England fans wearing Rodney and Dell Boy masks pose in Red Square ahead of tonight's World Cup semi-final game between England and Croatia on July 11, 2018 in Moscow, Russia. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
England fans pose for a picture with a replica World Cup trophy in Red Square ahead of the FIFA World Cup, Semi Final match at the Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday July 11, 2018. See PA story WORLDCUP Croatia. Photo credit should read: Aaron Chown/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use. No use with any unofficial 3rd party logos. No manipulation of images. No video emulation.
Croatia fans in Red Square ahead of the FIFA World Cup, Semi Final match at the Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday July 11, 2018. See PA story WORLDCUP Croatia. Photo credit should read: Aaron Chown/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use. No use with any unofficial 3rd party logos. No manipulation of images. No video emulation.
England fans in Red Square ahead of the FIFA World Cup, Semi Final match at the Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday July 11, 2018. See PA story WORLDCUP Croatia. Photo credit should read: Aaron Chown/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use. No use with any unofficial 3rd party logos. No manipulation of images. No video emulation.
A Croatia fan poses for a picture in Red Square ahead of the FIFA World Cup, Semi Final match at the Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday July 11, 2018. See PA story WORLDCUP Croatia. Photo credit should read: Aaron Chown/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use. No use with any unofficial 3rd party logos. No manipulation of images. No video emulation.
England fans in Red Square ahead of the FIFA World Cup, Semi Final match at the Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday July 11, 2018. See PA story WORLDCUP Croatia. Photo credit should read: Aaron Chown/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use. No use with any unofficial 3rd party logos. No manipulation of images. No video emulation.
TOPSHOT - (COMBO) This combination of photos created on July 9, 2018 shows Croatia and England's fans supporting their team during the Russia 2018 World Cup football tournament. Croatia and England will face each other on July 11, 2018 in Moscow for the Russia 2018 World Cup semi-final football match. / AFP PHOTO / --/AFP/Getty Images
MOSCOW, RUSSIA - JULY 11: England fans pose with a Russian fan in Red Square ahead of tonight's World Cup semi-final game between England and Croatia on July 11, 2018 in Moscow, Russia. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
MOSCOW, RUSSIA - JULY 11: England fans gather in Red Square ahead of tonight's World Cup semi-final game between England and Croatia on July 11, 2018 in Moscow, Russia. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
French supporters celebrate after watching the Russia 2018 World Cup semi-final football match between France and Belgium in Jette district, center of Brussels Brussels, on July 10, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Belga / NICOLAS MAETERLINCK / Belgium OUTNICOLAS MAETERLINCK/AFP/Getty Images
People celebrate France's victory on the Champs Elysees in Paris on July 10, 2018, after the final whistle of the Russia 2018 World Cup semi-final football match between France and Belgium. / AFP PHOTO / Lucas BARIOULETLUCAS BARIOULET/AFP/Getty Images
TOPSHOT - People celebrate France's victory in central Paris on July 10, 2018 after the final whistle of the Russia 2018 World Cup semi-final football match between France and Belgium. / AFP PHOTO / Thomas SAMSONTHOMAS SAMSON/AFP/Getty Images
TOPSHOT - Belgium supporters look on at the end of the Russia 2018 World Cup semi-final football match between France and Belgium at the Saint Petersburg Stadium in Saint Petersburg on July 10, 2018. France reached the World Cup final on Tuesday after a second-half header from Samuel Umtiti gave them a 1-0 win against Belgium. / AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYS / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADS GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP/Getty Images
Garreth Southgate, alias lookalike Neil Rowe, causes a stir as football fans, TV crews and tourists, mistake him for the real England manager as Neil tours Red Square ahead of the World Cup semi-final. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
Football fans arrive at the Saint Petersburg Stadium prior to the Russia 2018 World Cup semi-final football match between France and Belgium in Saint Petersburg on July 10, 2018.Pic: Getty Images
France fans arrive at the Saint Petersburg Stadium prior to the Russia 2018 World Cup semi-final football match between France and Belgium in Saint Petersburg on July 10, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / OLGA MALTSEVA / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADS OLGA MALTSEVA/AFP/Getty Images
France fans pose before the Russia 2018 World Cup semi-final football match between France and Belgium at the Saint Petersburg Stadium in Saint Petersburg on July 10, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / CHRISTOPHE SIMON / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADS CHRISTOPHE SIMON/AFP/Getty Images
Belgium fans watch a 2018 World Cup semifinal soccer match between France and Belgium on a giant screen in Jette, Belgium, Tuesday, July 10, 2018. (AP Photo/Olivier Matthys)
Football fans arrive at the Saint Petersburg Stadium prior to the Russia 2018 World Cup semi-final football match between France and Belgium in Saint Petersburg on July 10, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / OLGA MALTSEVA / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADS OLGA MALTSEVA/AFP/Getty Images
Belgium fans react as they watch a 2018 World Cup semifinal soccer match between France and Belgium on a giant screen in Jette, Belgium, Tuesday, July 10, 2018. (AP Photo/Olivier Matthys)
France's fans celebrate their team's victory at the end of the Russia 2018 World Cup semi-final football match between France and Belgium at the Saint Petersburg Stadium in Saint Petersburg on July 10, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Odd ANDERSEN / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADS ODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images
ANTWERPEN, BELGIUM - JULY 10: Belgian football fans react as they watch the World Cup Semi Final match between France and Belgium at a fan village on July 10, 2018 in Antwerpen, Belgium. (Photo by Jasper Juinen/Getty Images)
SAINT PETERSBURG, RUSSIA - JULY 10: Belgium fans look dejected following their's team defeat in the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Semi Final match between Belgium and France at Saint Petersburg Stadium on July 10, 2018 in Saint Petersburg, Russia. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
SAINT PETERSBURG, RUSSIA - JULY 10: Belgium fans look dejected following their's team defeat in the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Semi Final match between Belgium and France at Saint Petersburg Stadium on July 10, 2018 in Saint Petersburg, Russia. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
Russian football fan at the Samara FIFA fanfest reacts as they watch a giant TV screen during the penalty shoot out against Croatia on July 7, 2018 in Samara, Russia. Russia lost the the quarter final game against Croatia in a penlty shoot. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
SAMARA, RUSSIA - JULY 07: Russian football fans at the Samara FIFA fanfest react as they watch a giant TV screen during the penalty shoot out against Croatia on July 7, 2018 in Samara, Russia. Russia lost the the quarter final game against Croatia in a penlty shoot. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
SAMARA, RUSSIA - JULY 07: Russian football fan at the Samara FIFA fanfest reacts as they watch a giant TV screen during the penalty shoot out against Croatia on July 7, 2018 in Samara, Russia. Russia lost the the quarter final game against Croatia in a penlty shoot. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
SAMARA, RUSSIA - JULY 07: Russian football fans at the Samara FIFA fanfest react as they watch a giant TV screen during the penalty shoot out against Croatia on July 7, 2018 in Samara, Russia. Russia lost the the quarter final game against Croatia in a penlty shoot. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
TOPSHOT - Croatia's fans react as they watch on a giant screen in the Croatian capital Zagreb's main square, the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Round of 8 match between Russia and Croatia on July 7, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / --/AFP/Getty Images
Russian fans look on prior the quarterfinal match between Russia and Croatia at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Fisht Stadium, in Sochi, Russia, Saturday, July 7, 2018.(AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)
Fans gather in the fan fest of Moscow to watch the Russia 2018 World Cup quarter-final football match between Russia and Croatia on July 7, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Maxim ZMEYEVMAXIM ZMEYEV/AFP/Getty Images
Russian fans watch the quarter-final football match between Russia and Croatia on a giant screen at the Fan Fest in Saint Petersburg on July 7, 2018 during the Russia 2018 football World Cup tournament. / AFP PHOTO / OLGA MALTSEVAOLGA MALTSEVA/AFP/Getty Images
Russia fans cheer during the Russia 2018 World Cup quarter-final football match between Russia and Croatia at the Fisht Stadium in Sochi on July 7, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / PIERRE-PHILIPPE MARCOU / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADS PIERRE-PHILIPPE MARCOU/AFP/Getty Images
Russian fans react as they follow the quarter-final football match between Russia and Croatia on a giant screen at the Fifa Fans Fest in Saint Petersburg on July 7, 2018 during the Russia 2018 football World Cup tournament. / AFP PHOTO / OLGA MALTSEVAOLGA MALTSEVA/AFP/Getty Images
Russian fans watch the quarter-final football match between Russia and Croatia on a giant screen at the Fan Fest in Saint Petersburg on July 7, 2018 during the Russia 2018 football World Cup tournament. / AFP PHOTO / OLGA MALTSEVAOLGA MALTSEVA/AFP/Getty Images
SAMARA, RUSSIA - JULY 07: Sweden fans look dejected following the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Quarter Final match between Sweden and England at Samara Arena on July 7, 2018 in Samara, Russia. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)
England's fans pose before the Russia 2018 World Cup quarter-final football match between Sweden and England at the Samara Arena in Samara on July 7, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Fabrice COFFRINI / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADS FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP/Getty Images
SAMARA, RUSSIA - JULY 07: Sweden fans look dejected following the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Quarter Final match between Sweden and England at Samara Arena on July 7, 2018 in Samara, Russia. (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)
Sweden fans react at the end of the Russia 2018 World Cup quarter-final football match between Sweden and England at the Samara Arena in Samara on July 7, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Manan VATSYAYANA / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADS MANAN VATSYAYANA/AFP/Getty Images
SAMARA, RUSSIA - JULY 07: Sweden fans look dejected following the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Quarter Final match between Sweden and England at Samara Arena on July 7, 2018 in Samara, Russia. (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)
Sweden fans react at the end of the Russia 2018 World Cup quarter-final football match between Sweden and England at the Samara Arena in Samara on July 7, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Manan VATSYAYANA / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADS MANAN VATSYAYANA/AFP/Getty Images
Sweden fans react at the end of the Russia 2018 World Cup quarter-final football match between Sweden and England at the Samara Arena in Samara on July 7, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Manan VATSYAYANA / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADS MANAN VATSYAYANA/AFP/Getty Images
Two England fans rise a replica of the World Cup trophy before the Russia 2018 World Cup quarter-final football match between Sweden and England at the Samara Arena in Samara on July 7, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / YURI CORTEZ / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADS YURI CORTEZ/AFP/Getty Images
SAMARA, RUSSIA - JULY 07: Sweden fans enjoy the pre match atmosphere prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Quarter Final match between Sweden and England at Samara Arena on July 7, 2018 in Samara, Russia. (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)
Fans before the FIFA World Cup, Quarter Final match at the Samara Stadium. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday July 7, 2018. See PA story WORLDCUP Sweden. Photo credit should read: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use. No use with any unofficial 3rd party logos. No manipulation of images. No video emulation.
Brazil Fans cheer as they await his team arrival at Mirage Hotel in Kazan on July 5, 2018, for their Russia 2018 World Cup round of 8 football match against Belgium. Pic / AFP PHOTO / LUIS ACOSTALUIS ACOSTA/AFP/Getty Images
Brazil Fans cheer as they await his team arrival at Mirage Hotel in Kazan on July 5, 2018, for their Russia 2018 World Cup round of 8 football match against Belgium. / AFP PHOTO / LUIS ACOSTALUIS ACOSTA/AFP/Getty Images
A Russian woman watches football fans from Sweden play volley ball in the River Volga on July 6, 2018 in Samara, Russia. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
Uruguay's fans pose with national flags before the Russia 2018 World Cup quarter-final football match between Uruguay and France at the Nizhny Novgorod Stadium in Nizhny Novgorod on July 6, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Kirill KUDRYAVTSEVKIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images
TOPSHOT - France's fans pose past a national flag before the Russia 2018 World Cup quarter-final football match between Uruguay and France at the Nizhny Novgorod Stadium in Nizhny Novgorod on July 6, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Kirill KUDRYAVTSEVKIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images
TOPSHOT - (COMBO) This combination of photos created on July 6, 2018 shows Sweden and England fans supporting their team during the Russia 2018 World Cup football tournament. Sweden will face England during their World Cup quater-final football match in Samara on July 7, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / --/AFP/Getty Images
A Uruguay, right, and French fans wait for the start of the quarterfinal match between Uruguay and France at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Nizhny Novgorod Stadium, in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia, Friday, July 6, 2018. (AP Photo/Ricardo Mazalan)
Fans of Uruguay attend the broadcasting of the Russia 2018 FIFA World Cup football match Uruguay against France on a big screen at City Hall explanade in Montevideo, on July 6, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / PABLO PORCIUNCULAPABLO PORCIUNCULA/AFP/Getty Images
The beautiful game: World Cup fans - A Colombia's fan cheers prior to the Russia 2018 World Cup round of 16 football match between Colombia and England at the Spartak Stadium in Moscow on July 3, 2018.
Detail of a Colombia fans dyed hair ahead of the FIFA World Cup 2018, round of 16 match at the Spartak Stadium, Moscow.
MOSCOW, RUSSIA - JULY 03: A fan enjoys the pre match atmosphere prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Round of 16 match between Colombia and England at Spartak Stadium on July 3, 2018 in Moscow, Russia. (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)
Fans wait for the start of the round of 16 match between Belgium and Japan at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Rostov Arena, in Rostov-on-Don, Russia, Monday, July 2, 2018. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)
A Colombia's fan reacts at the end of to the Russia 2018 World Cup round of 16 football match between Colombia and England at the Spartak Stadium in Moscow on July 3, 2018.
A Colombia fan shows her support in the stands prior to the FIFA World Cup 2018, round of 16 match at the Spartak Stadium, Moscow.
A Colombia fan waits for the start of the Russia 2018 World Cup round of 16 football match between Colombia and England at the Spartak Stadium in Moscow on July 3, 2018.
A Colombia's fan cheers prior to the Russia 2018 World Cup round of 16 football match between Colombia and England at the Spartak Stadium in Moscow on July 3, 2018.
Swedish fans react as they watch the round of 16 World Cup 2018 football match between Sweden and Switzerland during a public viewing at Norra Bantorget in Stockholm, Sweden on July 3, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / TT News Agency / Erik SIMANDER / Sweden OUTERIK SIMANDER/AFP/Getty Images
Sweden fans wait for the start of the Russia 2018 World Cup round of 16 football match between Sweden and Switzerland at the Saint Petersburg Stadium in Saint Petersburg on July 3, 2018.
England fans react in horror to Colombia's equaliser at the end of extra time as they watch the FIFA 2018 World Cup Finals match between Colombia and England at Boxpark on July 3, 2018 in London, England. World Cup fever is building among England fans after reaching the Round of 16 in Russia. (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX ***
Fans of Brazil celebrates Brazil's victory over Mexico after watching the World Cup match between Brazil and Mexico on a big screen set on Alzira Brandao street in northern Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on July 2, 2018. Brazil beat Mexico 2-0 to qualify for World Cup quarter-finals. / AFP PHOTO / Mauro PimentelMAURO PIMENTEL/AFP/Getty Images
Portugal's fan after the round of 16 match between Uruguay and Portugal at the 2018 soccer World Cup at the Fisht Stadium in Sochi, Russia, Saturday, June 30, 2018. (AP Photo/Themba Hadebe)
A Russia's fan waits for the start of the round of 16 match between Spain and Russia at the 2018 soccer World Cup at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, Russia, Sunday, July 1, 2018. (AP Photo/Victor R. Caivano)
A Belgium and an England fan ahead of the FIFA World Cup Group G match at Kaliningrad Stadium.
A Japan's fan reacts at the end of the Russia 2018 World Cup round of 16 football match between Belgium and Japan at the Rostov Arena in Rostov-On-Don on July 2, 2018. Belgium won 3-2.
A football fan poses before the start of the Russia 2018 World Cup round of 16 football match between Belgium and Japan at the Rostov Arena in Rostov-On-Don on July 2, 2018.
A Russian woman poses for a photo with a foreign fan on Nikolskaya street in Moscow, on July 2, 2018. A petition has been launched demanding an apology from the tabloid newspaper that published a controversial article, describing Russian women as whores for flirting with foreign fans during the World Cup. / AFP PHOTO / MLADEN ANTONOVMLADEN ANTONOV/AFP/Getty Images
A Brazil's fan watch the Russia 2018 World Cup round of 16 football match between Brazil and Mexico at the Samara Arena in Samara on July 2, 2018.
A Mexico fan waits for the start of the Russia 2018 World Cup round of 16 football match between Brazil and Mexico at the Samara Arena in Samara on July 2, 2018.
ROSTOV-ON-DON, RUSSIA - JULY 02: A Japan fan looks dejected following their sides defeat in the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Round of 16 match between Belgium and Japan at Rostov Arena on July 2, 2018 in Rostov-on-Don, Russia. (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)
Brazil's fans pose as they cheer prior to the Russia 2018 World Cup round of 16 football match between Brazil and Mexico at the Samara Arena in Samara on July 2, 2018.
A Brazil fan poses before the Russia 2018 World Cup round of 16 football match between Brazil and Mexico at the Samara Arena in Samara on July 2, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / EMMANUEL DUNAND / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADSEMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP/Getty Images
A Brazil's fans cheers prior to the Russia 2018 World Cup round of 16 football match between Brazil and Mexico at the Samara Arena in Samara on July 2, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / MANAN VATSYAYANA / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADSMANAN VATSYAYANA/AFP/Getty Images
TOPSHOT - Fans of Swiss player Roger Federer poses as they queue for tickets outside The All England Tennis Club in Wimbledon, southwest London, on July 2, 2018, on the first day of the 2018 Wimbledon Championships tennis tournament. / AFP PHOTO / Oli SCARFF / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USEOLI SCARFF/AFP/Getty Images
SAMARA, RUSSIA - JULY 02: Mexico fans look dejected following their sides defeat in the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Round of 16 match between Brazil and Mexico at Samara Arena on July 2, 2018 in Samara, Russia. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)
ROSTOV-ON-DON, RUSSIA - JULY 02: A Japan fan looks dejected following their sides defeat in the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Round of 16 match between Belgium and Japan at Rostov Arena on July 2, 2018 in Rostov-on-Don, Russia. (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)
ROSTOV-ON-DON, RUSSIA - JULY 02: A fan has their face painted prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Round of 16 match between Belgium and Japan at Rostov Arena on July 2, 2018 in Rostov-on-Don, Russia. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
SAMARA, RUSSIA - JULY 02: A Brazil fan celebrates victory following the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Round of 16 match between Brazil and Mexico at Samara Arena on July 2, 2018 in Samara, Russia. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)
SAMARA, RUSSIA - JULY 02: A Brazil fan enjoys the pre match atmosphere prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Round of 16 match between Brazil and Mexico at Samara Arena on July 2, 2018 in Samara, Russia. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)
Brazil's fans cheer before the Russia 2018 World Cup Group E football match between Serbia and Brazil at the Spartak Stadium in Moscow on June 27, 2018.
An England fan in Nizhny Novgorod ahead of their match against Panama in the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.
A Germany's fan reacts at the end of the Russia 2018 World Cup Group F football match between South Korea and Germany at the Kazan Arena in Kazan on June 27, 2018
YEKATERINBURG, RUSSIA - JUNE 27: A Mexico fan enjoys the pre match prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group F match between Mexico and Sweden at Ekaterinburg Arena on June 27, 2018 in Yekaterinburg, Russia. (Photo by Hector Vivas/Getty Images)
KAZAN, RUSSIA - JUNE 27: A Korea Republic fan enjoys the pre match atmosphere prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group F match between Korea Republic and Germany at Kazan Arena on June 27, 2018 in Kazan, Russia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
KAZAN, RUSSIA - JUNE 27: A Germany fan looks dejected following his sides defeat in the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group F match between Korea Republic and Germany at Kazan Arena on June 27, 2018 in Kazan, Russia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
HAMBURG, GERMANY - JUNE 27: Fans of Germany are disappointed after watching the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Group F match between Korea Republic and Germany at the FIFA Fan Fest Heiligengeistfeld on June 27, 2018 in Hamburg, Germany. (Photo by Cathrin Mueller/Bongarts/Getty Images)
HAMBURG, GERMANY - JUNE 27: Fans of Germany support their Team while watching the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Group F match between Korea Republic and Germany at the FIFA Fan Fest Heiligengeistfeld on June 27, 2018 in Hamburg, Germany. (Photo by Cathrin Mueller/Bongarts/Getty Images)
A football fan looks on before the Russia 2018 World Cup Group C football match between Denmark and France at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on June 26, 2018.
HAMBURG, GERMANY - JUNE 27: Fans of Germany are disappointed after watching the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Group F match between Korea Republic and Germany at the FIFA Fan Fest Heiligengeistfeld on June 27, 2018 in Hamburg, Germany. (Photo by Cathrin Mueller/Bongarts/Getty Images)
MOSCOW, RUSSIA - JUNE 27: A Brazil fan enjoys the pre match atmosphere prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group E match between Serbia and Brazil at Spartak Stadium on June 27, 2018 in Moscow, Russia. (Photo by Buda Mendes/Getty Images)
A fan sends a kiss before the Russia 2018 World Cup Group E football match between Serbia and Brazil at the Spartak Stadium in Moscow on June 27, 2018.
A fan takes a selfie before the Russia 2018 World Cup Group E football match between Serbia and Brazil at the Spartak Stadium in Moscow on June 27, 2018.
A Sweden fan after the Russia 2018 World Cup Group F football match between Mexico and Sweden at the Ekaterinburg Arena in Ekaterinburg on June 27, 2018.
A fan smiles before the Russia 2018 World Cup Group E football match between Serbia and Brazil at the Spartak Stadium in Moscow on June 27, 2018.
A Uruguay soccer fan smiles ahead of the group A match between Uruguay and Russia at the 2018 soccer World Cup at the Samara Arena in Samara, Russia, Monday, June 25, 2018. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar)
An Iran's fan reacts at the end of the Russia 2018 World Cup Group B football match between Iran and Portugal at the Mordovia Arena in Saransk on June 25, 2018.
Argentina fans in the stands before the FIFA World Cup Group D match at Saint Petersburg Stadium.
TOPSHOT - Croatia fans cheer before the Russia 2018 World Cup Group D football match between Iceland and Croatia at the Rostov Arena in Rostov-On-Don on June 26, 2018. /
An Iceland fan supports his team on the stands prior to the start of the group D match between Iceland and Croatia, at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Rostov Arena in Rostov-on-Don, Russia, Tuesday, June 26, 2018. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)
Croatian fans cheer prior to the group D match between Iceland and Croatia, at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Rostov Arena in Rostov-on-Don, Russia, Tuesday, June 26, 2018. (AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda)
A fan with half his face painted with the Icelandic flag and the other half with the Croatian one poses with another fan before the Russia 2018 World Cup Group D football match between Iceland and Croatia at the Rostov Arena in Rostov-On-Don on June 26, 2018.
A fan with the French and Danish flags painted on the cheeks smile during the Russia 2018 World Cup Group C football match between Denmark and France at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on June 26, 2018.
France's fans look on as they wait before the Russia 2018 World Cup Group C football match between Denmark and France at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on June 26, 2018.
A France's fan smiles before the Russia 2018 World Cup Group C football match between Denmark and France at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on June 26, 2018.
A France's fan cheers her team during the Russia 2018 World Cup Group C football match between Denmark and France at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on June 26, 2018.
TOPSHOT - Denmark fans await the Russia 2018 World Cup Group C football match between Denmark and France at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on June 26, 2018.
Denmark fans await the Russia 2018 World Cup Group C football match between Denmark and France at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on June 26, 2018.
Iran's fans react at the end of the Russia 2018 World Cup Group B football match between Iran and Portugal at the Mordovia Arena in Saransk on June 25, 2018.
An Iran's fan reacts at the end of the Russia 2018 World Cup Group B football match between Iran and Portugal at the Mordovia Arena in Saransk on June 25, 2018.
ROSTOV-ON-DON, RUSSIA - JUNE 26: A fan looks on prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group D match between Iceland and Croatia at Rostov Arena on June 26, 2018 in Rostov-on-Don, Russia. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
ROSTOV-ON-DON, RUSSIA - JUNE 26: Fans of Iceland enjoy the pre match atmosphere prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group D match between Iceland and Croatia at Rostov Arena on June 26, 2018 in Rostov-on-Don, Russia. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
MOSCOW, RUSSIA - JUNE 26: A Denmark fan takes pictures during the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group C match between Denmark and France at Luzhniki Stadium on June 26, 2018 in Moscow, Russia. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)
MOSCOW, RUSSIA - JUNE 26: A France fan enjoys the pre match atmosphere prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group C match between Denmark and France at Luzhniki Stadium on June 26, 2018 in Moscow, Russia. (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)
MOSCOW, RUSSIA - JUNE 26: Fans enjoy the pre match atmosphere prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group C match between Denmark and France at Luzhniki Stadium on June 26, 2018 in Moscow, Russia. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)
SARANSK, RUSSIA - JUNE 25: Iran fans enjoy the pre match atmosphere prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group B match between Iran and Portugal at Mordovia Arena on June 25, 2018 in Saransk, Russia. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
A Russia fan waves a Russian flag before the start of the Russia 2018 World Cup Group A football match between Uruguay and Russia at the Samara Arena in Samara on June 25, 2018.
A woman reacts on the defeat of Russia against Uruguay while watching a live broadcast at the Fan Zone in Kazan on June 25, 2018 during the Russia 2018 World Cup football tournament. / AFP PHOTO / Saeed KHANSAEED KHAN/AFP/Getty Images
SARANSK, RUSSIA - JUNE 25: Iran fans enjoy the pre match atmosphere prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group B match between Iran and Portugal at Mordovia Arena on June 25, 2018 in Saransk, Russia. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
Egypt fans pose for a photo before the Russia 2018 World Cup Group A football match between Saudi Arabia and Egypt at the Volgograd Arena in Volgograd on June 25, 2018.
SARANSK, RUSSIA - JUNE 25: An Iran fan enjoys the pre match atmosphere prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group B match between Iran and Portugal at Mordovia Arena on June 25, 2018 in Saransk, Russia. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
VOLGOGRAD, RUSSIA - JUNE 25: An Egypt fan looks dejected following his sides defeat in the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group A match between Saudia Arabia and Egypt at Volgograd Arena on June 25, 2018 in Volgograd, Russia. (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)
Spain's fans pose before the Russia 2018 World Cup Group B football match between Spain and Morocco at the Kaliningrad Stadium in Kaliningrad on June 25, 2018.
SARANSK, RUSSIA - JUNE 25: A Portugal fan enjoys the pre match atmosphere prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group B match between Iran and Portugal at Mordovia Arena on June 25, 2018 in Saransk, Russia. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
TOPSHOT - An Iranian fan poses outside the Mordovia Arena prior to the Russia 2018 World Cup Group B football match between Iran and Portugal in Saransk on June 25, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Mladen ANTONOVMLADEN ANTONOV/AFP/Getty Images
An Egypt fan waits for the start of the Russia 2018 World Cup Group A football match between Saudi Arabia and Egypt at the Volgograd Arena in Volgograd on June 25, 2018.
An Iran fan cheers prior to the Russia 2018 World Cup Group B football match between Iran and Portugal at the Mordovia Arena in Saransk on June 25, 2018.
A Russia's fan reacts while watching on a giant screen in the Fans Zone of Ekaterinburg, the Russia 2018 World Cup Group A football match between Uruguay and Russia on June 25, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Anne-Christine POUJOULATANNE-CHRISTINE POUJOULAT/AFP/Getty Images
A Russia's fan watches on giant screen at the Fans Zone of Ekaterinburg, the Russia 2018 World Cup Group A football match between Uruguay and Russia on June 25, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Anne-Christine POUJOULATANNE-CHRISTINE POUJOULAT/AFP/Getty Images
TOPSHOT - A Russia supporter watches the Russia 2018 World Cup Group A football match between Uruguay and Russia on a giant screen at the FIFA Fan Fest in Nizhny Novgorod on June 25, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Johannes EISELEJOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images
An Iran fan cheers prior to the Russia 2018 World Cup Group B football match between Iran and Portugal at the Mordovia Arena in Saransk on June 25, 2018.
An Iran fan reacts after the Russia 2018 World Cup Group B football match between Iran and Portugal at the Mordovia Arena in Saransk on June 25, 2018.
An England fan in Nizhny Novgorod ahead of their match against Panama in the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.
Brazil fans show their support ahead of the FIFA World Cup Group E match at Saint Petersburg Stadium, Russia.
Brazil fans in the stands ahead of the FIFA World Cup Group E match at Saint Petersburg Stadium, Russia.
Panama fans show their support prior to the FIFA World Cup Group G match at the Nizhny Novgorod Stadium.
Fans of Mexico celebrate at Angel de la Independencia monument in Mexico City after Mexico beat South Korea 2-1 in their World Cup group match, on June 23, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Pedro PARDOPEDRO PARDO/AFP/Getty Images
Fans of Mexico celebrate at Angel de la Independencia monument in Mexico City after Mexico beat South Korea 2-1 in their World Cup group match, on June 23, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / ULISES RUIZULISES RUIZ/AFP/Getty Images
*** BESTPIX *** TIJUANA, MEXICO - JUNE 23: Mexico fans celebrate after their 2-1 victory over South Korea during the World Cup on June 23, 2018 in Tijuana, Mexico. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
Belgium fans pose as they await the Russia 2018 World Cup Group G football match between Belgium and Tunisia at the Spartak Stadium in Moscow on June 23, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Kirill KUDRYAVTSEV / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADSKIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images
ROSTOV-ON-DON, RUSSIA - JUNE 20: A Uruguay fan enjoys the pre match atmosphere prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group A match between Uruguay and Saudi Arabia at Rostov Arena on June 20, 2018 in Rostov-on-Don, Russia. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)
A young Uruguay fan cheers in the crowd before the Russia 2018 World Cup Group A football match between Uruguay and Saudi Arabia at the Rostov Arena in Rostov-On-Don on June 20, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Khaled DESOUKI / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADSKHALED DESOUKI/AFP/Getty Images
Iranian soccer fan cheers as she waits for the group B match between Iran and Spain at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Kazan Arena in Kazan, Russia, Wednesday, June 20, 2018. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)
KAZAN, RUSSIA - JUNE 20: An Iran fan enjoys the pre match atmosphere outside the stadium prior during the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group B match between Iran and Spain at Kazan Arena on June 20, 2018 in Kazan, Russia. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
KAZAN, RUSSIA - JUNE 20: An Spain fan enjoys the pre match atmosphere outside the stadium prior during the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group B match between Iran and Spain at Kazan Arena on June 20, 2018 in Kazan, Russia. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
A Russian fan smiles during the Russia 2018 World Cup Group A football match between Russia and Egypt, at the Fan Zone in Kaliningrad on June 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Ozan KOSEOZAN KOSE/AFP/Getty Images
KAZAN, RUSSIA - JUNE 20: An Iran fan enjoys the pre match atmosphere outside the stadium prior during the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group B match between Iran and Spain at Kazan Arena on June 20, 2018 in Kazan, Russia. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
KAZAN, RUSSIA - JUNE 20: A Spain fan enjoys the pre match atmosphere prior during the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group B match between Iran and Spain at Kazan Arena on June 20, 2018 in Kazan, Russia. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)
ROSTOV-ON-DON, RUSSIA - JUNE 20: A Uruguay fan enjoys the pre match atmosphere prior to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia group A match between Uruguay and Saudi Arabia at Rostov Arena on June 20, 2018 in Rostov-on-Don, Russia. (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)
TOPSHOT - A Russian fan reacts as she watches a screening of the Russia 2018 World Cup Group A football match between Russia and Egypt, at the Fan Zone in Nizhny Novgorod on June 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Johannes EISELEJOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images
A woman with a Russian national flag painted on her cheek looks on before the Russia 2018 World Cup Group A football match between Russia and Egypt, at the Fan Zone in Kaliningrad on June 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Ozan KOSEOZAN KOSE/AFP/Getty Images
A woman with a Russian national flag painted on her cheek looks on before the Russia 2018 World Cup Group A football match between Russia and Egypt, at the Fan Zone in Kaliningrad on June 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Ozan KOSEOZAN KOSE/AFP/Getty Images
A Russia fan waves flags prior to the Russia 2018 World Cup Group A football match between Russia and Egypt at the Saint Petersburg Stadium in Saint Petersburg on June 19, 2018.
A Russian fan poses in Ekaterinburg on June 19, 2018 during the Russia 2018 World Cup football tournament. / AFP PHOTO / HECTOR RETAMALHECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images
A Poland's fan poses as she cheers prior to the Russia 2018 World Cup Group H football match between Poland and Senegal at the Spartak Stadium in Moscow on June 19, 2018.
Poland's fans cheer prior to the Russia 2018 World Cup Group H football match between Poland and Senegal at the Spartak Stadium in Moscow on June 19, 2018.
An England fan outside the Volgograd Arena prior to the FIFA World Cup Group G match at The Volgograd Arena, Volgograd.
TOPSHOT - A fan with the face painted half like the Panama's flag and the other half like the Belgian flag cheers prior to the Russia 2018 World Cup Group G football match between Belgium and Panama at the Fisht Stadium in Sochi on June 18, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Nelson Almeida / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADSNELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images
A fan sporting Tunisia and England flags painted on her face awaits the start of the Russia 2018 World Cup Group G football match between Tunisia and England at the Volgograd Arena in Volgograd on June 18, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Philippe DESMAZES / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADSPHILIPPE DESMAZES/AFP/Getty Images
A Panama's fan cheers prior to the Russia 2018 World Cup Group G football match between Belgium and Panama at the Fisht Stadium in Sochi on June 18, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Nelson Almeida / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - NO MOBILE PUSH ALERTS/DOWNLOADSNELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images

That most recent defeat was an embarrassing and expensive affair, with England going out in the first round of voting, but the FA has made little secret of its interest in trying again, particularly as it now has more faith in FIFA’s selection process.

With the World Cup growing from 32 to 48 teams in 2026, when the 80-game tournament will be held in Canada, Mexico and the United States, FIFA has hinted it believes the event may be too big for one country.

This has led to speculation that any bid from the United Kingdom will actually be an English-led joint bid with one, two or all three of the other home nations, and both the Prime Minister Theresa May and the opposition Labour Party gave their support for this idea last month.

The FA has not confirmed or denied if it is considering a joint bid with any combination of Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales but it has now formally admitted it is studying options.

In a statement, FA chairman Greg Clarke said: “Last month the English FA board agreed to conduct feasibility work into the possibility of putting itself forward to be UEFA’s potential candidate to host the 2030 FIFA World Cup.

“This work will take place during the new season and no decision will be made until 2019.”

Clarke’s use of “English” FA is revealing as there is a conscious effort at football’s oldest national governing body to be humbler on the world stage, where every other FA’s name contains a reference to its nationality.

Another example of this can be seen in Clarke’s response to one of his predecessors’ suggestion that England could stage the 2022 World Cup if FIFA strips Qatar of its right to host the tournament.

This follows last weekend’s Sunday Times report that Qatar’s bid engaged in a ‘dirty tricks’ campaign to discredit its rivals in the build-up to the 2010 vote, an allegation Qatar has denied.

If proven true, however, former FA chairman Lord Triesman told the newspaper FIFA should give the World Cup to England, as it had the know-how and infrastructure in place to stage one at short notice.

We support the rotation of World Cup hosting among the confederations Greg Clarke

This intervention was not well received by the FA’s current regime, though.

“FIFA has chosen Qatar to host the 2022 World Cup and they have a duty to investigate any issues around the process that are rightly thrown into question,” said Clarke.

“Russia did a brilliant job hosting the 2018 World Cup and we support the rotation of World Cup hosting among the confederations. That would make the 2030 World Cup the next one a European nation might be able to host, and not before.

“Anyone suggesting otherwise is acting disrespectfully to our global game and does not speak for the English FA.”

The point about the rotation of World Cups among FIFA’s six confederations is important because Qatar is in the Asian Football Confederation, which means putative bids from China or North and South Korea would have to wait until 2034, as a host confederation cannot bid for the next two World Cups.

As the 2026 tournament is in North America, the 2030 battle looks set to be between a Moroccan-led North African bid, a joint bid from Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay and whoever emerges from Europe.

Of those two, the South American bid looks the most compelling as 2030 will be the 100th anniversary of the first World Cup in Uruguay and South America will claim it is its turn next as the continent’s last
World Cup was Brazil 2014, compared to Europe’s Russia 2018.

Africa, on the other hand, has staged only one World Cup, the 2010 tournament in South Africa, and Morocco’s failed bid for the 2026 event was its fifth such defeat.

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