In a sensational development on Wednesday (Oct 4), Saudi Arabia has formally submitted a bid to host the 2034 FIFA Men’s World Cup.
The development comes on a busy day in Switzerland’s Lausanne where the hosts for the 2030 World Cup were also declared.
If the bid is successful, Saudi Arabia will become the fourth Asian nation to host the FIFA Men’s World Cup, with Qatar, Japan, and South Korea being the other hosts in the past.
The bid “intends to deliver a world-class tournament and will draw inspiration from Saudi Arabia’s ongoing social and economic transformation and the country’s deep-rooted passion for football”, said a statement from the Saudi Arabian football federation.
Like the 2022 version of the FIFA World Cup, there is form possibility that the tournament could take place in winter to avoid the hot climate in Saudi Arabia. The Qatar World Cup was the first time, the FIFA World Cup took place in winter, but could once again disturb FIFA’s calendar in 2034.
Initially, Saudi Arabia was interested in bidding for the 2030 World Cup, but that plan was forked out earlier in the day. FIFA on Wednesday officially announced Europe, Africa, and South America as the joint-host for the tournament in 2030.
The deal will see the likes of Morocco, Spain, Portugal, Uruguay, Argentina, and Paraguay host the event, in a first.
Saudi Arabia’s football has been on the rise in recent years with their clubs bringing in big-name players like Cristiano Ronaldo, Karim Benzema, and N’Golo Kante applying their trade in the nation.
The 2023 summer transfer window saw a big overhaul in Saudi football with clubs spending big money on players as well as managers.
The FIFA World Cup was first hosted in Asia in 2002 when Brazil won the tournament beating Germany in the final while the 2022 edition saw Lionel Messi’s Argentina lift the prize asset. Argentina beat France in the final as they ended their 36-year wait for the World Cup. – WION.