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03 .FIFA World Cup - Bids

03 .FIFA World Cup - Bids

03 .FIFA World Cup - Bids



1930 FIFA World Cup


  •  Hungary
  •  Italy
  •  Netherlands
  •  Spain
  •  Sweden
  •  Uruguay

Before the FIFA Congress could vote on the first-ever World Cup host, a series of withdrawals led to the election of Uruguay. The Netherlands and Hungary withdrew, followed by Sweden withdrawing in favour of Italy. Then both Italy and Spain withdrew, in favour of the only remaining candidate, Uruguay. The FIFA Congress met in Barcelona, Spain on 18 May 1929 to ratify the decision, and Uruguay was chosen without a vote.


  1.  Uruguay
  2.  Italy withdrew
  3.  Spain withdrew
  4.  Sweden withdrew
  5.  Netherlands withdrew
  6.  Hungary withdrew

Notice that the celebration of the first World Cup coincided with the centennial anniversary of the first Constitution of Uruguay. For that reason, the main stadium built in Montevideo for the World Cup was named Estadio Centenario.

1934 FIFA World Cup


  •  Italy
  •  Sweden

Sweden decided to withdraw before the vote, allowing the only remaining candidate Italy to take the hosting job for the 1934 World Cup. The decision was ratified by the FIFA Congress in Stockholm, Sweden and Zürich, Switzerland on 14 May 1932. The Italian Football Federation accepted the hosting duties on 9 October 1932.


  1.  Italy
  2.  Sweden withdrew

1938 FIFA World Cup


  •  Argentina
  •  France
  • Nazi Germany Germany

Without any nations withdrawing their bids before the vote, the FIFA Congress convened in Berlin, Germany on 13 August 1936 to decide the next host of the World Cup. Electing France took only one ballot, as France had more than half of the votes in the first round.


  1.  France, 19 votes
  2.  Argentina, 3 votes
  3. Nazi Germany Germany, 1 vote

Cancelled FIFA World Cups 1942 and 1946

Bids for 1942:

  •  Argentina
  •  Brazil
  • Nazi Germany Germany

Cancelled FIFA election of the host due to the outbreak of the Second World War in September 1939.

Bids for 1946:

  • none

1950 and 1954 FIFA World Cups

1949 bid


  •  Brazil

Brazil, Argentina, and Germany had official bid for the 1942 World Cup, but the Cup was cancelled after the outbreak of World War II. The 1950 World Cup was originally scheduled for 1949, but the day after Brazil was selected by the FIFA Congress on 26 July 1946 in Luxembourg City, Luxembourg, the World Cup was rescheduled for 1950.


  1.  Brazil

1951 bid


  •   Switzerland

The 1951 World Cup hosting duty was decided on 26 July 1946, the same day that Brazil was selected for the 1949 World Cup, in Luxembourg City. On 27 July, the FIFA Congress pushed back the 5th World Cup finals for three years, deciding it should take place in 1954.


  1.   Switzerland

1958 FIFA World Cup


  •  Sweden

Argentina, Chile, Mexico, and Sweden expressed interest in hosting the tournament. Swedish delegates lobbied other countries at the FIFA Congress held in Rio de Janeiro around the opening of the 1950 World Cup finals. Sweden was awarded the 1958 tournament unopposed in on 23 June 1950.


  1.  Sweden

1962 FIFA World Cup


  •  Argentina
  •  Chile
  •  West Germany

West Germany withdrew before the vote, which took place in Lisbon, Portugal on 10 June 1956, leaving two remaining bids. In one round of voting, Chile won over Argentina.


  1.  Chile, 32 votes
  2.  Argentina, 11 votes
  3.  West Germany withdrew

1966 FIFA World Cup


  •  England
  •  West Germany
  •  Spain

Spain withdrew from the bidding prior to voting by the FIFA Congress, held in Rome, Italy on 22 August 1960. Again, there was only one round of voting, with England defeating West Germany for the hosting position.


  1.  England, 34 votes
  2.  West Germany, 27 votes
  3.  Spain withdrew

1970 FIFA World Cup


  •  Argentina
  •  Australia
  •  Colombia
  •  Japan
  •  Mexico
  •  Peru

The FIFA Congress convened in Tokyo, Japan on 8 October 1964. One round of voting saw Mexico win the hosting duties over Argentina.


  1.  Mexico, 56 votes
  2.  Argentina, 32 votes
  3.  Australia withdrew
  4.  Colombia withdrew
  5.  Japan withdrew
  6.  Peru withdrew
  •  Argentina
  •  Australia
  •  Colombia
  •  Japan
  •  Mexico
  •  Peru

The FIFA Congress convened in Tokyo, Japan on 8 October 1964. One round of voting saw Mexico win the hosting duties over Argentina.


  1.  Mexico, 56 votes
  2.  Argentina, 32 votes
  3.  Australia withdrew
  4.  Colombia withdrew
  5.  Japan withdrew
  6.  Peru withdrew

1974, 1978, 1982 FIFA World Cups

Three hosts for the 1974, 1978, and 1982 World Cups were chosen in London, England on 6 July 1966 by the FIFA Congress. Spain and West Germany, both facing each other in the running for hosting duties for the 1974 and 1982 World Cups, agreed to give one another a hosting job. Germany withdrew from the 1982 bidding process while Spain withdrew from the 1974 bidding process, essentially guaranteeing each a hosting spot. Mexico, who had won the 1970 hosting bid over Argentina just two years prior, agreed to withdraw and let Argentina take the 1978 hosting position.

1974 results

  1.  West Germany
  2.  Spain withdrew in exchange for 1982 hosting duties
  3.  Italy withdrew
  4.  Netherlands withdrew

1978 results

  1.  Argentina
  2.  Colombia withdrew
  3.  Mexico withdrew, as they had won hosting for World Cup 1970

1982 results

  1.  Spain
  2.  West Germany withdrew in exchange for 1974 hosting duties
  3.  Italy withdrew

1986 FIFA World Cup


  •  Colombia

Host voting, handled by the then-FIFA Executive Committee (or Exco), met in Stockholm on 9 June 1974 and ratified the unopposed Colombian bid.


  1.  Colombia

However, Colombia withdrew after being selected to host the World Cup due to financial problems on 5 November 1982, less than four years before the event was to start. A call for bids was sent out again, and FIFA received intent from three nations:

  •  Canada
  •  Mexico
  •  United States

In Zürich on 20 May 1983, Mexico won the bidding unanimously as voted by the Executive Committee, for the first time in FIFA World Cup bidding history (except those nations who bid unopposed).


  1.  Mexico unanimous vote
  2.  United States 0 votes
  3.  Canada 0 votes

1990 FIFA World Cup


  •  Austria
  •  England
  •  France
  •  Greece
  •  Iran
  •  Italy
  •  Soviet Union
  •  West Germany
  •  Yugoslavia

Except Italy and the Soviet Union, all nations withdrew before the vote, which was to be conducted by Exco in Zürich on 19 May 1984. Once again, only one round of voting was required, as Italy won more votes than the Soviet Union.


  1.  Italy, 11 votes
  2.  Soviet Union, 5 votes
  3.  Austria withdrew
  4.  England withdrew
  5.  France withdrew
  6.  Greece withdrew
  7.  Iran withdrew
  8.  West Germany withdrew
  9.  Yugoslavia withdrew

1994 FIFA World Cup


  •  Brazil
  •  Morocco
  •  United States
  •  Chile

Despite having three nations bidding for host duties, voting only took one round. The vote was held in Zürich (for the third straight time) on 4 July 1988. The United States won the bid by receiving a little over half of the votes by the Exco members.


  1.  United States, 10 votes
  2.  Morocco, 7 votes
  3.  Brazil, 2 votes
  4.  Chile withdrew

1998 FIFA World Cup


  •  England
  •  France
  •  Germany
  •  Morocco
  •   Switzerland

This vote was held in Zürich for the fourth straight time on 1 July 1992. Only one round of voting was required to have France assume the hosting job over Morocco.


  1.  France, 12 votes
  2.  Morocco, 7 votes
  3.   Switzerland withdrew
  4.  England withdrew
  5.  Germany withdrew

2002 FIFA World Cup


  •  South Korea/ Japan
  •  Mexico

On 31 May 1996, the hosting selection meeting was held in Zürich for the fifth straight time. A joint bid was formed between Japan and South Korea, and the bid was "voted by acclamation", an oral vote without ballots. The first joint bid of the World Cup was approved, edging out Mexico.


  1.  South Korea/ Japan (joint bid, voted by acclamation)
  2.  Mexico

The 2002 FIFA World Cup was co-hosted in Asia for the first time by South Korea and Japan (the final was held in Japan). Initially, the two Asian countries were competitors in the bidding process. But just before the vote, they agreed with FIFA to co-host the event. However, the rivalry and distance between them led to organizational and logistical problems. FIFA has said that co-hosting is not likely to happen again, and in 2004 officially stated that its statutes did not allow co-hosting bids.]

2006 FIFA World Cup


  •  Brazil
  •  England
  •  Germany
  •  Morocco
  •  South Africa

On 6 July 2000, the host selection meeting was held for the sixth straight time in Zürich. Brazil withdrew its bid three days before the vote, and the field was narrowed to four. This was the first selection in which more than one vote round was required. Three votes were eventually needed. Germany was at least tied for first in each of the three votes, and ended up defeating South Africa by only one vote after an abstention (see below).

Nation Vote
Round 1 Round 2 Round 3
 Germany 10 11 12
 South Africa 6 11 11
 England 5 2 Eliminated
 Morocco 2 Eliminated Eliminated
Total votes 23 24 23


The controversy over the decision to award the 2006 FIFA World Cup to Germany led to a further change in practice. The final tally was 12 votes to 11 in favour of Germany over the contenders South Africa, who had been favorites to win. New Zealand FIFA member Charlie Dempsey, who was instructed to vote for South Africa by the Oceania Football Confederation, abstained from voting at the last minute. If he had voted for the South African bid, the tally would have been 12–12, giving the decision to FIFA President Sepp Blatter, who, it was widely believed, would then have voted for South Africa.

Dempsey was among eight members of the Executive Committee to receive a fax by editors of the German satirical magazine Titanic on Wednesday, the night before the vote, promising a cuckoo clock and Black Forest ham in exchange for voting for Germany. He argued that the pressure from all sides including "an attempt to bribe" him had become too much for him.

On 4 August 2000, consequently, FIFA decided to rotate the hosting of the final tournaments between its constituent confederations. This was until October 2007, during the selection of the host for the 2014 FIFA World Cup, when they announced that they will no longer continue with their continental rotation policy (see below).

2010 FIFA World Cup


  •  Egypt
  •  Morocco
  •  Nigeria
  •  South Africa
  •  Tunisia /  Libya

The first World Cup bidding process under continental rotation (the process of rotating hosting of the World Cup to each confederation in turn) was the 2010 FIFA World Cup, the first World Cup to be held in Africa. On 7 July 2001, during the FIFA Congress in Buenos Aires, a decision was ratified, which was that the rotation will begin in Africa. On 23 September 2002, FIFA's Executive Committee confirmed that only African member associations, would be invited to submit bids to host the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

In January 2003, Nigeria entered the bidding process, but withdrew their bid in September. In March 2003, Sepp Blatter initially said Nigeria's plan to co host the 2010 FIFA World Cup with four African countries would not work. Nigeria had originally hoped to bid jointly with West African neighbours Benin, Ghana, and Togo.

After it was confirmed by FIFA that joint bidding would not be allowed in the future, Libya and Tunisia withdrew both of their bids on 8 May 2004. On 15 May 2004 in Zürich (the seventh consecutive time that a host selection has been made there), South Africa, after a narrow loss in the 2006 bidding, defeated perennial candidate Morocco to host, 14 votes to 10. Egypt received no votes.

Nation Vote
Round 1
 South Africa 14
 Morocco 10
 Egypt 0
 Tunisia /  Libya Withdrew
 Nigeria Withdrew
Total votes 24


On 28 May 2015, media covering the 2015 FIFA corruption case reported that high-ranking officials from the South African bid committee had secured the right to host the World Cup by paying US$10 million in bribes to then-FIFA Vice President Jack Warner and to other FIFA Executive Committee members.

On 4 June 2015, FIFA executive Chuck Blazer, having co-operated with the FBI and the Swiss authorities, confirmed that he and the other members of FIFA's executive committee were bribed in order to promote the South African 1998 and 2010 World Cups. Blazer stated, "I and others on the Fifa executive committee agreed to accept bribes in conjunction with the selection of South Africa as the host nation for the 2010 World Cup."

On 6 June 2015, The Daily Telegraph reported that Morocco had received the most votes, but South Africa was awarded the tournament instead.

2014 FIFA World Cup


  •  Argentina
  •  Brazil
  •  Colombia

FIFA continued its continental rotation procedure by earmarking the 2014 World Cup for South America. FIFA initially indicated that it might back out of the rotation concept, but later decided to continue it through the 2014 host decision, after which it was dropped.

Colombia had expressed interest in hosting the 2014 World Cup, but withdrew undertaking the 2011 FIFA U-20 World Cup. Brazil also expressed interest in hosting the World Cup. CONMEBOL, the South American Football Federation, indicated their preference for Brazil as a host. Brazil was the only nation to submit a formal bid when the official bidding procedure for CONMEBOL member associations was opened in December 2006, as by that time, Colombia, Chile and Argentina had already withdrawn, and Venezuela was not allowed to bid.

Brazil made the first unopposed bid since the initial selection of the 1986 FIFA World Cup (when Colombia was selected as host, but later withdrew for financial problems). The FIFA Executive Committee confirmed it as the host country on 30 October 2007 by a unanimous decision.


2014 FIFA bidding (majority 12 votes)
Bidders Votes
Round 1 Round 2
 Brazil N/A N/A
 Argentina   Withdrew
 Colombia   Withdrew

2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cups

2018 Bids:

  •  Belgium /  Netherlands
  •  England
  •  Spain /  Portugal
  •  Russia

2022 Bids:

  •  Australia
  •  Japan
  •  South Korea
  •  Qatar
  •  United States

FIFA announced on 29 October 2007 that it will no longer continue with its continental rotation policy, implemented after the 2006 World Cup host selection. The newest host selection policy is that any country may bid for a World Cup, provided that their continental confederation has not hosted either of the past two World Cups. For the 2018 World Cup bidding process, this meant that bids from Africa and South America were not allowed.

For the 2022 World Cup bidding process, this meant that bids from South America and Europe were not allowed. Also, FIFA formally allowed joint bids once more (after they were banned in 2002), due to there being only one organizing committee per joint bid, unlike Korea/Japan, which had two different organizing committees. countries that announced their interest included Australia, England, Indonesia, Japan, Qatar, Russia, South Korea, United States, the joint bid of Spain and Portugal and the joint bid of Belgium and Netherlands.

The hosts for both World Cups were announced by the FIFA Executive Committee on 2 December 2010. Russia was selected to host the 2018 FIFA World Cup, making it the first time that the World Cup will be hosted in Eastern Europe and making it the biggest country geographically to host the World Cup. Qatar was selected to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup, making it the first time a World Cup will be held in the Middle East and the second time in Asia. Also, the decision made it the smallest country geographically to host the World Cup.

2018 Results
Nation Vote
Round 1 Round 2
 Russia 9 13
 Spain /  Portugal 7 7
 Netherlands /  Belgium 4 2
 England 2 Eliminated
Total votes 22 22
2022 results
Nation Vote
Round 1 Round 2 Round 3 Round 4
 Qatar 11 10 11 14
 United States 3 5 6 8
 South Korea 4 5 5 Eliminated
 Japan 3 2 Eliminated Eliminated
 Australia 1 Eliminated Eliminated Eliminated
Total votes 22 22 22 22

The bidding process for the 2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cups was the process by which the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) selected locations for the 2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cups. The process began officially in March 2009; eleven bids from thirteen countries were received, including one which was withdrawn and one that was rejected before FIFA's executive committee voted in November 2010. Two of the remaining nine bids applied only to the 2022 World Cup, while the rest were initially applications for both. Over the course of the bidding, all non-European bids for the 2018 event were withdrawn, resulting in the exclusion of all European bids from consideration for the 2022 edition. By the time of the decision, bids for the 2018 World Cup included England, Russia, a joint bid from Belgium and Netherlands, and a joint bid from Portugal and Spain. Bids for the 2022 World Cup came from Australia, Japan, Qatar, South Korea, and the United States. Indonesia's bid was disqualified due to lack of governmental support, and Mexico withdrew its bid for financial reasons.

On 2 December 2010, Russia and Qatar were selected as the locations for the 2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cups respectively.

The bidding process involved several controversies. Two members of the FIFA Executive Committee had their voting rights suspended following allegations that they would accept money in exchange for votes. England and Russia's respective 2018 bids also were subject to controversy after England filed a complaint against a Russian official's comment, though the complaint was withdrawn following Russia's apology. More allegations of vote buying arose after Qatar's win was announced.

Total bids by country

World Cup-winning bids are bolded. Planned but not-yet-official bids for 2030 and beyond are not included.

Country Bids Years
 Germany 6 1938, 1962,[a] 1966,[a] 1974,[a] 1982,[a] 2006
 Argentina 5 1938, 1962, 1970, 1978, 2030[b]
 Mexico 1970, 1978, 1986,[c] 2002, 2026[d]
 Morocco 1994, 1998, 2006, 2010, 2026
 Spain 1930, 1966, 1974, 1982, 2018[e]
 Brazil 4 1950, 1994, 2006, 2014
 England 1966, 1990, 2006, 2018
 United States 1986, 1994, 2022, 2026[d]
 Italy 3 1930, 1934, 1990
 Japan 1970, 2002,[f] 2022
 Canada 2 1986, 2026[d]
 Chile 1962, 2014
 Colombia 1986,[c] 2014
 France 1938, 1998
 Netherlands 1930, 2018[g]
 Russia 1990,[h] 2018
 South Africa 2006, 2010
 South Korea 2002,[f] 2022
  Switzerland 1954, 1998
 Uruguay 1930, 2030[b]
 Australia 2022
 Belgium 1 2018[g]
 Egypt 2010
 Greece 1990
 Hungary 1930
 Iran 1990
 Libya 2010[i]
 Paraguay 2030[b]
 Portugal 2018[e]
 Qatar 2022
 Sweden 1958
 Tunisia 2010[i]
a. Bid by West Germany, which was joined by East Germany in 1990 to form the reunified nation of Germany.
b. Joint bid by Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay.
c. Colombia was originally chosen to host the 1986 World Cup, but withdrew from hosting due to economic concerns. After a second bidding, Mexico was selected as the replacement host.
d. Joint bid by Canada, Mexico and the United States
e. Joint bid by Portugal and Spain.
f. Joint bid by Japan and South Korea.
g. Joint bid by Belgium and the Netherlands.
h. Bid by the Soviet Union, which dissolved into multiple countries in 1991 and whose records are inherited by Russia
i. Joint bid by Libya and Tunisia.


In October 2007, FIFA ended its continental rotation policy. Instead countries that are members of the same confederation as either of the last two tournament hosts are ineligible, leaving Africa ineligible for 2018 and South America ineligible for both 2018 and 2022. Other factors in the selection process include the number of suitable stadiums, and their location across candidate nations. Voting is done using a multiple round exhaustive ballot system whereby the candidate receiving the fewest votes in each round is eliminated until a single candidate is chosen by the majority.

Rotation policy

FIFA's confederations

Following the selection of the 2006 World Cup hosts, FIFA had decided on a policy for determining the hosts of future editions. The six world confederations—roughly corresponding to continents—would rotate in their turn of providing bids, for a specific edition, from within their member national associations. This system was used only for the selection of the 2010 (South Africa) and 2014 World Cup (Brazil) hosts, open only to CAF and CONMEBOL members, respectively.

In September 2007, the rotation system came under review, and a new system was proposed which renders ineligible for bidding only the last two World Cup host confederations. This proposal was adopted on 29 October 2007, in Zurich, Switzerland by FIFA's Executive Committee. Under this policy, a 2018 bid could have come from North America, Asia, Europe, or Oceania, as Africa and South America are ineligible.] Likewise, no CONMEBOL member could have made a 2022 bid, and candidates from the same confederation as the successful 2018 applicant would be disregarded in the 2022 selection procedure.

The United States, the last non-European candidate in the 2018 bidding cycle, withdrew its bid for that year; hence the 2018 tournament would have to be held in Europe. This in turn meant that South America and Europe were ineligible for 2022

Voting procedure

For both the 2018 and 2022 editions of the World Cup, the FIFA Executive Committee voted to decide which candidate should host the tournament. The multiple round exhaustive ballot system was used to determine the tournament host. All eligible members of the FIFA Executive Committee had one vote. The candidate country that received the fewest votes in each round was eliminated until a single candidate was chosen by the majority. In the event of a tied vote, FIFA President Sepp Blatter would have had the deciding vote. There are twenty-four members on the Committee, but two of those were suspended due to accusations of selling votes.]


Date Notes
15 January 2009 Applications formally invited
2 February 2009 Closing date for registering intention to bid
16 March 2009 Deadline to submit completed bid registration forms
14 May 2010 Deadline for submission of full details of bid
19 July 2010 Four-day individual applicant inspections begin
17 September 2010 Inspections end]
2 December 2010 FIFA appointed hosts for 2018 and 2022 World Cups

2018 bids

Eleven bids were submitted in March 2009 covering thirteen nations, with two joint bids: Belgium-Netherlands and Portugal-Spain. Mexico also submitted a bid, but withdrew theirs on 28 September 2009, while Indonesia had their bid rejected for lack of government support on 19 March 2010.] Five of the remaining nine bids, South Korea, Qatar, Japan, Australia and United States were only for the 2022 World Cup, while all the others bid for both the 2018 and 2022 World Cups.] However, since all of the bids for the 2018 World Cup were from European nations, and FIFA's rules dictate that countries belonging to confederations that hosted either of the two preceding tournaments are not eligible to host,] all of these bids were forced to be for 2018 only. Four bids came from the Asian Football Confederation (AFC), four from Europe's UEFA, and one from CONCACAF. It had also been reported on the FIFA website that Egypt was entering a bid, but the president of the Egyptian Football Association denied that any more than an inquiry in principle had been made.]

BelgiumNetherlands Belgium & Netherlands
Map of 2018 FIFA World Cup bids.svg
England England
Russia Russia
PortugalSpain Portugal & Spain
Australia Australia
Japan Japan
Qatar Qatar
South Korea South Korea
United States United States
Indonesia Indonesia
Mexico Mexico
 2018 bid
 2022 bid
 Cancelled bid
 Ineligible in 2018
 Ineligible in both

Belgium and the Netherlands

Alain Courtois, a Belgian Member of Parliament, announced in October 2006 that a formal bid would be made on behalf of the three Benelux countries: Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg.] In June 2007 the three countries launched their campaign not as a joint bid in the manner of the Korea-Japan World Cup in 2002, but emphasising it as a common political organisation.] Luxembourg would not host any matches or automatically qualify for the finals in a successful Benelux bid, but would host a FIFA congress.]

Belgium and the Netherlands registered their intention to bid jointly in March 2009. A delegation led by the presidents of the Belgian and Dutch national football associations met FIFA president Sepp Blatter on 14 November 2007, officially announcing their interest in submitting a joint bid. On 19 March 2008 the delegation also met with UEFA President Michel Platini to convince him that it was a serious offer under one management. Afterwards they claimed to have impressed Platini, who supports the idea of getting the World Cup to Europe. Former French football international Christian Karembeu was presented as official counselor for the joint bid on 23 June 2009.

A factor that was against the Benelux bid was the lack of an 80,000 capacity stadium to host the final. However, the city council of Rotterdam gave permission in March 2009 for development of a new stadium with a capacity of around 80,000 seats to be completed in time for the possible World Cup in 2018. In November 2009, the venues were presented. In Belgium, matches would have been played in 7 venues: Antwerp, Bruges, Brussels, Charleroi, Genk, Ghent and Liège. In the Netherlands, only five cities would host matches: Amsterdam, Eindhoven, Enschede, Heerenveen and Rotterdam, but both Amsterdam and Rotterdam would provide two stadiums. Eindhoven would function as the 'capital city' of the World Cup. Euro 2000 was also jointly hosted by Belgium and the Netherlands.


On 31 October 2007, The Football Association officially announced its bid to host the event. On 24 April 2008 England finalised a 63-page bid to host the 2018 World Cup, focusing on the development of football worldwide. On 27 January 2009, England officially submitted their bid to FIFA. Richard Caborn led England's bid to stage the event after stepping down as Sports Minister. On 24 October 2008 the Football Association named the Executive Board to prepare the bid, with David Triesman as the bid chairman. Triesman resigned on 16 May 2010 after comments were published where he suggested that Spain would drop their bid if Russia helped bribe referees in the 2010 FIFA World Cup, and was then replaced by Geoff Thompson.

The British government backed the England 2018 bid. In November 2005, Chancellor Gordon Brown and Sport Minister Tessa Jowell first announced that they were to investigate the possibility of bidding. That month, Adrian Bevington, the Football Association's Director of Communications, announced the support of the Government and the Treasury in the bid, but put off definite proposals. Brown reiterated his support for a bid in March 2006, before England's 2006 World Cup campaign, and again in May 2006. The UK government launched its official report on 12 February 2007, in which it was made clear that its support was for an England-only bid and that all games would be played at English grounds. The venues selected on 16 December 2009 to form the bid were: London (three stadiums), Manchester (two stadiums), Birmingham, Bristol, Leeds, Liverpool, Milton Keynes, Newcastle, Nottingham, Plymouth, Sheffield and Sunderland.

FIFA officials also expressed interest in an English bid. David Will, a vice-president of FIFA, noted England's World Cup proposal as early as May 2004. Franz Beckenbauer, leader of Germany's successful bid for the 2006 World Cup and a member of FIFA's Executive Committee, twice publicly backed an English bid to host the World Cup, in January and July 2007. FIFA President Sepp Blatter said he would welcome a 2018 bid from "the homeland of football." Blatter met David Cameron on two occasions to discuss the bid while paying visits to England. The British Prime Minister showed much support for the bid and was hopeful that the "home of football" would host the tournament.

Portugal and Spain

The President of the Portuguese Football Federation (FPF), Gilberto Madail, first proposed a joint bid with Spain in November 2007. The bid intent was confirmed by FIFA president, Sepp Blatter, on 18 February 2008. However, the president of the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF), Angel Villar, announced in July 2008 that it was Spain's intention to submit an individual World Cup bid, and that positive contacts had already taken place with the government, through the secretary of sports, Jaime Lissavetzky. No specifications were made then regarding a joint bid with Portugal. On 23 November 2008, after his re-election for the RFEF presidency, Villar pledged that one of the fundamental objectives of his term was to bring a World Cup to Spain. While he did not mention whether Spain would present a joint bid with Portugal, he did not rule it out when asked about it.

On 23 December 2008, Angel Villar restated "We need to present a strong, consistent and winning bid for the 2018 World Cup." He further confessed "Personally, I think it should be with Portugal." Subsequently, in the aftermath of a RFEF meeting board, Spain and Portugal announced their intention to bid together. Spanish sports newspaper Marca advanced some details about the potential bid: Spain would lead a twelve-stadium project with eight of the venues, and the opening and final games would be held in Lisbon and Madrid, respectively. Spain has previously hosted the 1982 World Cup, while Portugal organised the Euro 2004.


Russia announced its intent to bid in early 2009, and submitted its request to FIFA in time. Russia's President Vladimir Putin took a keen interest in the bid and ordered Vitaly Mutko, the Minister of Sports, to "prepare a bid for Russia to hold the 2018 World Cup". According to a report earlier submitted by Vitaly Mutko, who also served that time as President of the Russian Football Union (RFU), the country was ready to spend some $10.1 billion on the tournament. The bid committee also included RFU CEO Alexey Sorokin and Alexander Djordjadze as the Director of Bid Planning and Operations.

Fourteen cities were included in the proposal, which divided them into five different clusters: one in the north, centered on Saint Petersburg, a central cluster, centered on Moscow, a southern cluster, centered on Sochi, and the Volga River cluster. Only one city beyond the Ural Mountains was cited, Yekaterinburg. The other cities were: Kaliningrad in the north cluster, Rostov-on-Don and Krasnodar in the south cluster and Yaroslavl, Nizhny Novgorod, Kazan, Saransk, Samara and Volgograd in the Volga River cluster. At the time of bidding, Russia did not have a stadium with 80,000 capacity, but the bid called for the expansion of Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, already a UEFA Elite stadium, from a capacity of slightly over 78,000 to over 89,000. Russia hoped to have five stadiums fit to host World Cup matches ready by 2013 – two in Moscow and one stadium each in Saint Petersburg, Kazan and Sochi, which at the time was due to host the 2014 Winter Olympics.

2022 bids


In September 2007, the Football Federation Australia confirmed that Australia would bid for the 2018 World Cup finals. Previously, in late May 2006, the Victorian sports minister, Justin Madden, said that he wanted his state to drive a bid to stage the 2018 World Cup. Frank Lowy, the FFA chairman, stated that they aimed to use 16 stadiums for the bid. Former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd announced the Federal Government's support for the bid, and in December 2008, Federal minister for sport Kate Ellis announced that the federal government would give the FFA $45.6 million to fund its World Cup bid preparation. Rudd met with Sepp Blatter to discuss the Commonwealth Government's support of the bid in Zurich in July 2009.

At the 2008 FIFA Congress, held in Sydney, FIFA president Sepp Blatter suggested that Australia concentrate on hosting the 2022 tournament, but Lowy responded by recommitting Australia to its 2018 bid. However, Australia ultimately withdrew from the bidding for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in favour of the 2022 FIFA World Cup on 10 June 2010, following comments from the chief of the Asian Football Confederation that the 2018 tournament should be held in Europe.

Australia's largest stadiums are currently used by other major Australian sports whose domestic seasons overlap with the World Cup. The Australian Football League and National Rugby League claimed that loss of access to these major venues for eight weeks would severely disrupt their seasons and impact the viability of their clubs. The AFL in particular had previously advised it would not relinquish Etihad Stadium in Melbourne for the entire period required. On 9 May 2010 the AFL, NRL, and FFA announced a Memorandum of Understanding guaranteeing that the AFL and NRL seasons would continue, should the bid be successful. Compensation for the rival football codes would be awarded as a result of any disruptions caused by hosting the World Cup. AFL CEO Andrew Demetriou came out in support of the bid, despite initially not supporting the bid. Franz Beckenbauer indicated that the issue of factional disputes between the FFA, NRL and, AFL were not considered by the FIFA Executive Committee. Although initially Australia seemed to be a popular contender to host the tournament, the final Australian World Cup bid received only one vote astonishing Franz Beckenbauer and experts alike.


Japan bid to become the first Asian country to host the World Cup twice; however, the fact that they were co-hosts so recently in 2002 was expected to work against them in their bid. Although Japan did not have an 80,000-seat capacity stadium, its plan was based on a proposed 100,000-seat stadium that would have gone on to be a centrepiece of 2016 Olympics, for which Tokyo was bidding.

Japan also pledged that if it had been granted the rights to host the 2022 World Cup games, it would develop technology enabling it to provide a live international telecast of the event in 3D, which would allow 400 stadiums in 208 countries to provide 360 million people with real-time 3D coverage of the games projected on giant screens, captured in 360 degrees by 200 HD cameras. Furthermore, Japan will broadcast the games in holographic format if the technology to do so is available by that time. Beyond allowing the world's spectators to view the games on flat screens projecting 3D imaging, holographic projection would project the games onto stadium fields, creating a greater illusion of actually being in the presence of the players. Microphones embedded below the playing surface would record all sounds, such as ball kicks, in order to add to the sense of realism.

The Olympic bid was unsuccessful, coming third in the bidding process that concluded in October 2009. The Vice-President of the Japan Football Association, Junji Ogura, had previously admitted that if Tokyo were to fail in its bid, its chances of hosting either the 2018 or 2022 World Cup would not be very good. On 4 May 2010, Japan announced that it was withdrawing its bid for the 2018 tournament to focus on 2022, amidst rising speculation that the 2018 edition will be held in Europe.


Qatar made a bid for only the 2022 World Cup. Qatar was attempting to become the first Arab country to host the World Cup. Failed bids from other Arab countries include Morocco (1994, 1998, 2006 and 2010), Egypt and a Libya-Tunisia joint bid withdrew in the 2010 World Cup bidding process. Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani, son of the former Emir of Qatar, was the chairman of the bid committee. Qatar planned to promote the bid as an Arab unity bid and hoped to draw on support from the entire Arab world and were positioning this as an opportunity to bridge the gap between the Arab and Western worlds. The bid launched an advertising campaign across the nation in November 2009.

Some concerns with Qatar's bid deal with the extreme temperatures. The World Cup is always held in the European off-season in June and July and during this period the average daytime high in most of Qatar is in excess of 40 °C (104 °F), with the average daily low temperatures not dropping below 30 °C (86 °F). Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, the 2022 Qatar bid chairman, responded saying "the event has to be organised in June or July. We will have to take the help of technology to counter the harsh weather. We have already set in motion the process. A stadium with controlled temperature is the answer to the problem. We have other plans up our sleeves as well." The first five proposed stadiums are planned to employ cooling technology capable of reducing temperatures within the stadium by up to 20 degrees Celsius. Additionally, the upper tiers of the stadiums will be dis-assembled after the World Cup and donated to countries with less developed sports infrastructure.

President of FIFA Sepp Blatter endorsed the idea of having a World Cup in the Middle East, saying in April 2010, "The Arabic world deserves a World Cup. They have 22 countries and have not had any opportunity to organise the tournament." Blatter also praised Qatar's progress, "When I was first in Qatar there were 400,000 people here and now there are 1.6 million. In terms of infrastructure, when you are able to organise the Asian Games (in 2006) with more than 30 events for men and women, then that is not in question." Qatar's bid to host the 2022 World Cup received a huge boost on 28 July 2010 when Asian Football Confederation (AFC) President Mohammed Bin Hammam threw his weight behind his country's campaign. Speaking in Singapore, Bin Hammam said: "I have one vote and, frankly speaking, I will vote for Qatar but if Qatar is not in the running I will vote for another Asian country." Qatar has already hosted the AFC Asian Cup in 1988, FIFA U-20 World Cup 1995 and the 2011 AFC Asian Cup.

South Korea

South Korea bid only for the 2022 World Cup. They were bidding to become the first Asian country to host the World Cup twice; however, the fact that they were co-hosts so recently in 2002 was expected to work against them in their bid. Seungjoo Han, a former South Korean Minister of Foreign Affairs, was appointed as the Chairman of the Bidding Committee in August 2009. He met with FIFA President Sepp Blatter in Zürich, Switzerland. In January 2010, the president Lee Myung-bak visited the headquarters of FIFA in Zurich, Switzerland to meet Sepp Blatter in support of the South Korean bid.

Although South Korea did not have an 80,000 capacity stadium, it planned to upgrade an existing venue to meet that capacity. There are three grounds which can seat over 60,000 people—Seoul Olympic Stadium, Seoul World Cup Stadium and Daegu Stadium. Another 70,000 seat stadium is scheduled to be built in Incheon as the main stadium for the 2014 Asian Games. Other venues meet hosting requirements as they were built for the 2002 World Cup. The 12 Cities selected to hold the finals were South Korea to win the bid were selected in March 2010 and were Busan, Cheonan, Daegu, Daejeon, Goyang, Gwangju, Incheon (2 Venues), Jeonju, Jeju, Seoul (2 Venues), Suwon and Ulsan.

United States

U.S. Soccer first said in February 2007 that it would bid for the 2018 World Cup. On 28 January 2009, U.S. Soccer then announced that it would submit bids for both the 2018 and 2022 Cups. David Downs, president of Univision Sports, was executive director of the bid. Other committee members included president of U.S. Soccer Sunil Gulati, U.S. Soccer chief executive officer Dan Flynn, Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber, and Phil Murphy, the former national finance chairman for the Democratic National Committee. The vice president of FIFA, Jack Warner, who is also the president of CONCACAF, originally said he would try to bring the World Cup back to the CONCACAF region. However, Warner also stated that he preferred the USSF change their plans to make a bid for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

In April 2009, the bid committee identified 70 stadiums in 50 communities as possible venues for the tournament, with 58 confirming their interest. The list of stadiums was trimmed two months later to 45 in 37 cities, and then in August 2009 to 32 stadiums in 27 cities. In January 2010, 18 cities and 21 stadiums were selected for the final bid. The cities were Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston (Foxboro), Dallas, Denver, Houston, Indianapolis, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Miami, Nashville, New York, Philadelphia, Phoenix, San Diego, Seattle, Tampa, and Washington, D.C. The cities with multiple qualifying stadiums were Los Angeles, Seattle, Dallas and Washington. With several large American football stadiums, the 21 venues were to have an average capacity of 77,000; none seated fewer than 65,000. Seven of the stadiums seat at least 80,000. Two proposed stadiums would be used by Major League Soccer during the summer.[citation needed]

In October 2010, the United States withdrew from the 2018 bid process, to focus solely on the 2022 competition.

Cancelled bids

Two countries had to cancel bids for the 2018 or 2022 FIFA World Cups before individual evaluations began. Mexico cancelled its bid for both cups, while Indonesia was only bidding for the 2022 World Cup.


In January 2009 the Football Association of Indonesia (PSSI) confirmed their intention to bid for the 2022 FIFA World Cup, with government support. In February 2009, PSSI launched the "Green World Cup Indonesia 2022" campaign. This campaign included a $1 billion plan to upgrade supporting infrastructure beside stadiums to meet FIFA's requirements. The funds to construct stadiums were to come from regional governments. Indonesia had previously made World Cup history when it became the first Asian nation to play in a World Cup, at the 1938 tournament in France under its colonial name of the Dutch East Indies. Indonesia also had tournament hosting experience as the co-host of 2007 AFC Asian Cup.

In the campaign presentation, PSSI president Nurdin Halid said he believed Indonesia stood a chance to win FIFA's approval to host the 2022 World Cup, despite the relatively poor infrastructure, coupled with the low quality of the national squad compared to other candidates. He said Indonesia had proposed a "Green World Cup 2022", hoping to capitalise on the current green and global warming movement worldwide: "Our deforestation rate has contributed much to world pollution. By hosting the World Cup, we wish to build infrastructure and facilities that are environmentally friendly so we can give more to the planet."

The bid was launched at a moment when there were strong pressures from Indonesian football fans for Halid to step down from his position as chairman of PSSI. There was no official support from the government of Indonesia until 9 February 2010, the deadline for the country's government to file a letter of support for the bid. Secretary General of PSSI Nugraha Besoes did not deny that Indonesia could be disqualified from the bidding process because the Indonesian government did not support the bid. On 19 March 2010, FIFA rejected Indonesia's bid to host the 2022 World Cup because the government stated that their concern is for the people of the country and so could not support the bid as FIFA requested.] As a consequence, PSSI threw their support behind Australia's bid for the 2022 tournament.


Former Mexican Football Federation President, Alberto de la Torre, announced their intention to bid for the cup in 2005, but was ineligible because of the rotation policy at that time.[citation needed]


Eligible voters

FIFA President
  • Sepp Blatter (banned in 2015 for eight years by FIFA Ethics Committee, amid a sweeping corruption investigation led by the U.S. in the 2015 FIFA corruption case)
Senior Vice President
  • Argentina Julio Grondona (died on 30 July 2014)
Vice Presidents
  • Cameroon Issa Hayatou
  • South Korea Chung Mong-joon
  • Trinidad and Tobago Jack Warner (Indicted for corruption in 2015 FIFA corruption case)
  • Spain Angel Maria Villar
  • France Michel Platini
  • England Geoff Thompson
  • Belgium Michel D'Hooghe
  • Brazil Ricardo Teixeira (Indicted on 3 December 2015 by U.S. Department of Justice)
  • Qatar Mohamed Bin Hammam
  • Turkey Senes Erzik
  • United States Chuck Blazer (Plead guilty to corruption charges in 2015 FIFA corruption case)
  • Thailand Worawi Makudi
  • Paraguay Nicolas Leoz (Indicted for corruption in 2015 FIFA corruption case)
  • Japan Junji Ogura
  • Cyprus Marios Lefkaritis
  • Ivory Coast Jacques Anouma
  • Germany Franz Beckenbauer
  • Guatemala Rafael Salguero (Indicted on 3 December 2015 by U.S. Department of Justice)
  • Egypt Hany Abo Rida
  • Russia Vitaly Mutko
Prevented from voting
  • French Polynesia Reynald Temarii
  • Nigeria Amos Adamu

Voting rounds

On 2 December 2010, FIFA president Sepp Blatter announced the winning bids at FIFA's headquarters in Zurich. Russia was chosen to host the 2018 World Cup, and Qatar was chosen to host the 2022 World Cup. This made Russia the first Eastern European country to host the World Cup, while Qatar would be the first Middle Eastern country to host the World Cup. Blatter noted that the committee had decided to "go to new lands" and reflected a desire to "develop football" by bringing it to more countries.

In each round a majority of twelve votes was needed. If no bid received 12 votes in a round, the bid with the fewest votes in that round was eliminated. The actual votes cast were as follows:

2018 World Cup host vote results
Country Vote
1 2
 Russia 9 13
 Spain/ Portugal 7 7
 Netherlands/ Belgium 4 2
 England 2
Total Votes 22 22
2022 World Cup host vote results
Country Vote
1 2 3 4
 Qatar 11 10 11 14
 United States 3 5 6 8
 South Korea 4 5 5
 Japan 3 2
 Australia 1
Total Votes 22 22 22 22


In reaction to the announcement there were celebrations on the streets of Doha. The Qatar Stock Exchange responded strongly with increased participation in trading following the announcement.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad told his Qatari counterpart that hosting the tournament "is a big athletic event which can promote football in the Persian Gulf area and Middle East region." He also said Iran was ready to help Qatar in hosting the event, while saying he hoped its neighbours "could achieve a reasonable share to attend the games." al-Thani "underlined [a] necessity of cooperation between regional countries to use and take advantage of the sport opportunity." He also added that Qatar's initiative would motivate its neighbours to "promote and develop their football."

Roger Burden, who had been acting chairman of England's Football Association, withdrew his application for the permanent post days after the vote, saying he could not trust FIFA members due to their actions. England's bid executive Andy Anson said "I think it has to [change] because otherwise why would Australia, the United States, Holland, Belgium, England ever bother bidding again?" There was also a backlash from the media in the losing countries; the majority of British newspapers alleged that the World Cup had been "sold" to Russia, and the Spanish El Mundo, Dutch Algemeen Dagblad, the American Seattle Times and Wall Street Journal, and the Japanese Nikkei made comments about Russia and Qatar's commodity and energy reserves.

Shortly after the voting,, the Internet arm of American sports broadcasting giant ESPN, published a piece that partially linked Qatar's successful bid to Football Dreams, a youth development program that the country has bankrolled since 2005. At the time of bidding, Football Dreams operated in 15 countries in sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and Southeast Asia—six of which had representatives on the FIFA executive committee.

Allegations of vote-buying

Bayern Munich President Uli Hoeneß said that Blatter "has lost control" of FIFA and that "It's a scandal how things run there (at FIFA). Apparently, a bid nowadays can only be successful if payments are additionally made under the table. One scandal comes on the heels of another."

On 10 May 2011, the former England 2018 bid chief Lord Treisman told a House of Commons select committee that four FIFA committee members approached him asking for various things in exchange for votes. Among the accused are FIFA Vice President Jack Warner, who is accused of asking for £2.5 million to be used for projects, and Nicolas Leoz, who allegedly asked to be knighted. In November 2010, a documentary broadcast by the BBC had alleged that FIFA officials voting on the World Cup bids had received large bribes between 1989 and 1999, which FIFA had not investigated and that FIFA requires bidding countries to agree to enact special laws granting FIFA and sponsors tax benefits.

Also on 10 May 2011, The Sunday Times reported that two committee members, Issa Hayatou and Jacques Anouma were given $1.5 million in exchange for their votes in favor of Qatar. FIFA requested to see the evidence of the allegations. On 30 May 2011, FIFA President Sepp Blatter rejected the evidence in a press conference, while Jack Warner, who had been suspended that day for a separate ethics violations pending an investigation, leaked an email from FIFA General Secretary Jérôme Valcke which suggested that Qatar had "bought" the rights to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Valcke subsequently issued a statement denying he had suggested it was bribery, saying instead that the country had "used its financial muscle to lobby for support". Qatar officials denied any impropriety. Theo Zwanziger, President of the German Football Association, also called on FIFA to re-examine the awarding of the Cup to Qatar. In February 2011, Blatter admitted that the Spanish and Qatari bid teams did try to trade votes, "but it didn't work".

The whistleblower at the centre of the allegations was later revealed to be Phaedra Almajid, who claimed that she had fabricated the claims of corruption in order to exact revenge on the Qatari bid after being relieved of her campaign job on the team. She signed a legal affidavit and claimed that she decided to go public with her admission because her "lies had gone too far." FIFA confirmed receipt of an email from Almajid stating her retraction. Having originally claimed African Football Confederation president Issa Hayatou, Ivorian FIFA member Jacques Anomua and Nigeria's suspended exco official Amos Adamu were paid $1.5m to vote for Qatar, Almajid went on to say "I cannot tell you how sorry I am. I have hurt reputations of three members of the Fifa [sic] exco, I have hurt their reputation, and more importantly I have hurt my colleagues on the Qatar bid." She also stressed that she had not been put under any pressure by the Qatari bid team or anyone else to make a retraction. John Whittingdale, the chairman of the House of Commons select committee for culture, media and sport, stood by the decision to publish the allegations against Qatar and the three executive committee members despite the retraction.




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