Photo credit: U.S. Soccer
For those who have been closely following the bids for the 2018 and 2022 World Cup, it is not a big surprise that the USA Bid Committee has decided with withdraw from competition for the 2018 tournament. England has long been the heavy favorite to host that year.
The U.S. is now a clear favorite for 2022, competing against Australia, Japan, Korea Republic and Qatar. Here are some quotes from the U.S. Soccer release:
“For some time we have been in conversations with FIFA and UEFA about the possibility of focusing only on the 2022 bidding process, an option we have made reference to many times,” said Sunil Gulati, Chairman of the USA Bid Committee and President of U.S. Soccer. “We are confident this is in the best interests of the USA Bid.”
“We have had an open and constructive dialogue with the USA Bid for some time now, after it became apparent that there was a growing movement to stage the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Europe,” said FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke. “The announcement today by the USA Bid to focus solely on the 2022 FIFA World Cup is therefore a welcome gesture which is much appreciated by FIFA.”
During meetings in Zurich on Oct. 28-29, the FIFA Executive Committee will make its final votes to determine the hosts for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments.