By Andrew Warshaw
August 31 – The Scottish and Welsh FAs have confirmed that exploratory talks are under way for a UK bid for the 2030 World Cup – even though South America would probably be regarded as favourites.
Just as news broke that Morocco may link up with Spain and Portugal for a tripartite bid, so it seems ever more likely that England and the other British federations will also go for 2030 in what could develop into a three-candidate race.
Welsh FA chief executive Jonathan Ford said: “This is something that has come up in conversation and it is something we are looking into. It’s no more than that and there’s going to be no news until at least midway through 2019.
“But there is going to be a little bit of a feasibility study to see whether or not a UK-wide bid, a home nations bid or similar, would be a powerful, strong bid.
“Personally, I think it would be and I think, should we go forward at that stage – which, as I say, won’t be determined until well into 2019 – I think we’d have a very strong and compelling bid.
“There’s a long way to go on it, but it could be 2030, FIFA World Cup in the home nations – what a fantastic opportunity that would be. The reality is, for countries like Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, it’s always going to be a case of having to do it in partnership with another and the logical partner for us would be England,” Ford added.
An English-led home nations bid for the 2030 World Cup was described in June as “definitely on the radar” by former Scottish FA boss Stewart Regan.
It came after FIFA vice-president David Gill played up England’s chances having lost out to Russia for the right to host the 2018 tournament.
The elephant in the room is Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay who have announced their plans to jointly bid for 2030 to mark the centenary of the World Cup, first staged in Uruguay.
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