WASHINGTON: US Soccer Federation president Sunil Gulati told the Washington Post that his group are preparing a bid for the 2018 World Cup and positioning US cities to be ready as a backup for the 2014 edition.
The newspaper reported that the federation would form an organising committee this weekend at annual meetings in Los Angeles and prepare to advise FIFA of their intent to launch a 2018 bid.
The only men's World Cup hosted by the United States was in 1994, which was a success in terms of attendance and staging. The Americans have improved their reputation among global football squads since, reaching the last eight in 2002.
“We've got some history and a track record,” Gulati told the Post. “We showed in 1994 that the US is capable of hosting a terrific event.
“Now with the way the soccer landscape in this country has evolved, we would be in position to put on a spectacular event. We are much more a part of the sport internationally than we were in 1994.”
England is also planning a 2018 bid, with British Finance Minister Gordon Brown saying earlier this month that the government will back any bid by England's Football Association (FA) to host the 2018 World Cup.
FIFA is not expected to make a decision on a 2018 host until 2011 or 2012.
South Africa will host the next World Cup in 2010 with the 2014 event set to be hosted in South America. – AFP