FIFA World Cup 2030

TheLocalYokel

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Reported today that PM Boris Johnson will pledge nearly £3 million to support a joint bid for the 2030 FIFA World Cup by the four home nations and the Republic of Ireland. That's public money, not from BJ's own pocket.

In the past the host nation's team has qualified for the Finals automatically. In 2002 when the World Cup was hosted jointly by South Korea and Japan both countries' teams were given a free ride into the Finals.

I'm not sure what's happening in that regard in 2026 when Canada, the USA and Mexico will jointly host the competition. If the UK/Ireland bid was to succeed it could mean five teams given an automatic right to the Finals.

The USA and Mexico have hosted the competition in the past (Mexico twice in the past 50 years) but given the scale and cost of putting it on the FIFA World Cup Finals are now probably beyond the reach of many smaller countries, thus joint bids are the only way for some to become involved.

Johnson might also believe it won't do his attempts to prevent the break-up of the UK any harm. He might have to be careful because it could reopen the door to claims by many countries that the UK should field one team in the World Cup and not four.

That said, governments don't bid for World Cup Finals. The football associations of countries apply to FIFA but governmental support is vital, even essential, and not always in a manner that many would deem to be above board.
 

Jerry

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I don't see a tournament with 5 host nations happening not to mention 1 of them not having a big enough stadium. Would an England tournament with games hosted in Cardiff, Edinburgh and Dublin be viable but then why should England host tournament games outside of England when it has plenty of suitable stadiums itself?
 

TheLocalYokel

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I don't see a tournament with 5 host nations happening not to mention 1 of them not having a big enough stadium. Would an England tournament with games hosted in Cardiff, Edinburgh and Dublin be viable but then why should England host tournament games outside of England when it has plenty of suitable stadiums itself?
I don't think it's been decided whether the three countries hosting the 2026 Finals will receive automatic entry.

I think the number of teams at the 2026 Finals is due to be increased to 48 from the 32 at recent Finals, so that would reduce the disproportionate effect of more 'unearned' entries to the Finals to a degree. It might be assumed that 2030 will see the same number of teams as 2026 at the Finals (when England won the World Cup in 1966 there were only 16 teams at the Finals).

If England through the Football Associations was awarded the Finals I don't know whether they would be permitted by FIFA to stage some games in the rest of the UK and the Republic of Ireland. Obviously if it was a joint bid by the five associations games could be played across all the countries.

Northern Ireland certainly doesn't have any big stadiums - I think the largest holds 18,000 spectators although it might be expected that it would be increased in capacity if a bid was successful. It could still be useful for holding some of the early games between 'smaller' countries in football terms that might not attract the same interest as the 'bigger' countries.
 
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