Following Australia’s last-minute decision not to bid, it appears that Saudi Arabia is poised to become the host of the 2034 World Cup.
“We have reached the conclusion not to do so for the 2034 competition,” Football Australia (FA) said in a statement. This was reached just hours before FIFA’s deadline for interested countries to make their bids.
International Football Federation President Gianni Infantino made an announcement on Instagram, confirming that Saudi Arabia has secured the hosting rights for the prestigious football event on a larger scale.
He added that “football unites the world like no other sport, and the FIFA World Cup is the perfect showcase” for this message, highlighting that it “provides an important illustration of how different cultures can be together.”
By October 31, FIFA had extended invitations to Asian and Oceanic countries, urging them to submit their bids to host the tournament.
If Saudi Arabia meets all the required technical standards, they are expected to receive the official host designation by the end of 2024. The endorsement of Saudi as the host will be subject to the approval of the General Assembly of the International Football Association Board (IFAB) in the fourth quarter of 2024, in compliance with FIFA regulations.
This would place Saudi on the path to hosting the World Football Championship ten years from now.
Following Qatar’s hosting of the World Cup in 2022, Saudi will become the second Arab Gulf country to ever host this prestigious tournament.
Meanwhile, Morocco, Spain, and Portugal have been chosen as hosts for the 2030 FIFA World Cup. The tournament will kick off with the opening matches held in South America.
Last month, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman expressed the Kingdom’s aspiration to host the 2034 World Cup. He emphasized that hosting the tournament symbolizes the comprehensive progress achieved across all sectors. Saudi Crown Prince further stated that this accomplishment has positioned Saudi as a global leader. Additionally, he highlighted that the Kingdom has become an international hub for hosting major global events in various domains. These statements were reported by the Saudi Press Agency (SPA).
Dedication to sports
The Kingdom is displaying remarkable dedication to the sports sector and undertaking unprecedented measures in this field. Significant emphasis is being placed on sports and youth initiatives. The objective is to enhance the quality of life for all segments of society and achieve one of the key goals of Vision 2030.
The objectives of Vision 2030 encompass enhancing physical and social well-being, as well as promoting healthy lifestyles. These goals will be accomplished by encouraging higher levels of physical activity among the population. Also by motivating individuals to adopt healthier lifestyles, advocating the principles and values of sports. In addition to the aforementioned measures, the objectives will be met by focusing on elevating the overall performance. This will contribute to enhancing and developing the sports environment in the Kingdom.
The sports sector plays a crucial role in Saudi’s strategy for economic diversification.
From early 2021 to June 2023, the Kingdom has allocated approximately $6 billion towards sports investments. Over the past few years, Saudi Arabia has made notable acquisitions in various sports disciplines, extending beyond football. These significant investments encompass areas such as boxing, golf, car racing, among many more.
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