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FIFA delay decision on 2030 World Cup bidding



Global football body FIFA has announced it will postpone its vote on bidding rules for the 2030 World Cup, in which Morocco’s joint bid with Spain and Portugal is broadly considered a top contender.

The news comes a day after Saudi Arabia’s joint bid with Egypt and Greece was dropped, as Saudi Arabia reportedly considered the Iberian-Moroccan bid too strong to compete with.

FIFA’s 200 members were supposed to vote in September to establish the final rules for the bidding campaign for the world’s most prestigious sports event.

On Friday however, FIFA announced the vote would be postponed to the “last quarter of 2024.”

Currently there are two bids considered to be likely winners of the campaign to host the 2030 World Cup, a joint bid by Spain, Portugal and Morocco, and a South American bid by Uruguay, Argentina,Chile, and Paraguay. A third potential contender, a tri-continental bid by Greece, Egypt and Saudi Arabia has fallen apart in recent days


On Thursday, Spanish outlet Marca reported that Saudi Arabia had decided to not bid for the football tournament, reportedly due to the strong competition it faced from the Iberian-Moroccan bid. Marca reported that “after studying in detail the real framework of possibilities, Saudi Arabia has concluded that it is impossible to prevail over the Spain-Portugal-Morocco candidacy.”

The joint bid by Morocco,Spain and Portugal was further strengthened this week as Morocco announced plans to renovate six stadiums in preparation for a unique European-African football festival by three football-mad countries.

The two remaining bids could however still face new competition, as the official bidding process is yet to begin following FIFA’s vote on the official rules for the bidding campaign.

Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

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