News / Middle East

Russia, Qatar Win Bids to Host World Cups in 2018 and 2022

FIFA President Joseph Blatter announces Russia to host the 2018 World Cup, 02 Dec 2010
FIFA President Joseph Blatter announces Russia to host the 2018 World Cup, 02 Dec 2010
Parke Brewer

Football's world governing body, FIFA, has selected Russia and Qatar as hosts for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups. The surprising votes by FIFA's executive committee came Thursday in Zurich.


The announcements of the future World Cup hosts came less than 30 minutes apart, with FIFA President Sepp Blatter first announcing the 2018 host.

"The 2018 FIFA World Cup, 2018 FIFA World Cup, ladies and gentleman, will be organized in Russia," said Blatter.

It was a crushing defeat for England which had hoped to stage football's premier event for the first time since 1966. Russia has never hosted a World Cup, nor has any nation in Eastern Europe, and senior English football figures said England's status as an established football power may have contributed to its defeat. Others hinted a critical media may have been to blame. The other losers for 2018 were joint bids from Spain-Portugal and the Netherlands-Belgium.

No country in the Middle East has ever hosted a World Cup, but that has changed, as Blatter opened the second sealed envelope.

"The winner to organize the 2022 World Cup is Qatar," he announced.

That announcement meant for the second time in just over one year that the United States lost out hosting a future major international sporting event. In October of 2009, the U.S. midwest city of Chicago was defeated by Brazil to stage the 2016 Summer Olympics.

Even the presence of former President Bill Clinton on the U.S. World Cup bid committee and likely sell-outs for every game was not enough. Ed Foster-Simeon, president of the U.S. Soccer Foundation, told VOA it was a great disappointment to not win the 2022 bid.

"We felt our bid was extremely compelling," said Foster-Simeon. "The game in the United States has benefitted greatly from the 1994 World Cup and would have benefitted even further from hosting of the 2022 World Cup. The decision didn't go our way this time. We respect that decision."

And U.S. fans like Max Croes, who attended the recent World Cup in South Africa, expressed their disappointment.

"It would have been great to host the World Cup here," said Croes. "There's no doubt that it would have done a lot to continue to grow the sport, grow fans, promote our league - Major League Soccer - and get a lot of new athletes involved in the sport."

Qatar's Ambassador to the United States Ali Al-Hajri told VOA he thinks FIFA made the right decision.

"I think the people of the Middle East deserve to have the tournament and bring the joy to that place [the region]," said Al-Hajri.

This year's World Cup was held in Africa for the first time and the month-long South African tournament was a great success. The 2014 World Cup will be staged in Brazil.

You May Like

Is Air Travel Safe?

Aviation expert says despite tragic losses of Malaysian Airlines flights 370 and 17, industry experienced lowest fatality rate in recorded history last year More

Multimedia 100 Days Later, Nigerian Girls Still Held

Activists holding rallies in Nigeria and several other countries to mark 100th day of captivity for more than 200 schoolgirls being held by Boko Haram More

Chocolate Too Bitter? Swap Sugar for Mushrooms

US food technology company develops fermentation process using mushrooms to reduce bitterness in cocoa beans, believes it will cut sugar content in candy More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Carriers Suspend Travel to Israeli
X
Carolyn Presutti
July 23, 2014 1:21 AM
The United States is prohibiting American carriers from flying to Israel's airport in Tel Aviv for 24 hours, because of rising violence between Israel and Hamas militants. The action was announced on Tuesday, after a rocket fired by Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip landed near the airport. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti tells us, international officials soon may have to determine which combat zones are too dangerous for commercial flights.
Video

Video US Carriers Suspend Travel to Israel

The United States is prohibiting American carriers from flying to Israel's airport in Tel Aviv for 24 hours, because of rising violence between Israel and Hamas militants. The action was announced on Tuesday, after a rocket fired by Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip landed near the airport. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti tells us, international officials soon may have to determine which combat zones are too dangerous for commercial flights.
Video

Video NASA Focuses on Earth-Like Planets

For decades, looking for life elsewhere in the universe meant listening for signals that could be from distant civilizations. But recent breakthroughs in space technology refocused some of that effort toward finding planets that may harbor life, even in its primitive form. VOA’s George Putic reports on a recent panel discussion at NASA’s headquarters, in Washington.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video US Awards Medal of Honor for Heroics in Bloodiest of Afghan Battles

U.S. combat troops are withdrawing from Afghanistan, on pace to leave the country by the end of this year. But on Monday, U.S. President Barack Obama took time to honor a soldier whose actions while under fire in Afghanistan earned him the Medal of Honor. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.

AppleAndroid