JAKARTA, March 24 (Bernama): Asean sports officials have discussed with the region’s football key stakeholders on the submission process for the joint bid in 2026 to host the 2034 World Cup.
Members of the technical working group also discussed the general requirements, timeline, and the role each member countries will take for the month-long tournament.
The meeting for preparing Asean’s joint bid was held virtually on Wednesday and chaired by Dr Niwat Limsuknirun, chairperson of the Asean Senior Officials Meeting on Sports.
According to the Asean Secretariat, the bid for possible hosting of the tournament was first mooted by the region’s foreign ministers at their 2011 retreat in Lombok, Indonesia.
During the 2019 regional summit in Bangkok, Thailand, leaders of Asean then welcomed the shared wish of the region to develop a joint bid to host the FIFA World Cup.
The leaders supported the efforts of member countries’ national football associations and the Asean Football Federation (AFF) to realise this goal.
In response to the leaders’ statement, the AFF had, in June 2019, expressed its support for the initiative to launch a joint bid to host the World Cup in 2034.
The World Cup is the most prestigious association football tournament in the world, as well as the most widely viewed and followed single sporting event in the world.
The viewership of the 2018 World Cup was estimated to be 3.57 billion (close to half of the global population), while the engagement with 2022 World Cup was estimated to be around 5 billion with close to 1.5 billion people watching the final match between Argentina vs France.
17 countries have hosted the World Cup since, most recently is Qatar who hosted the 2022 edition.
The 2026 tournament will be jointly hosted by Canada, the United States and Mexico, which will give Mexico the distinction of being the first country to host games in three World Cups. - Bernama