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

How to Safeguard Your Mobile Privacy

As the digital world becomes more mobile, so too do concerns about eroding privacy and increased hacking More

'Desert Dancer' Chronicles Iranian Underground Dance Troupe

Film by Richard Raymond is based on true story of Afshin Ghaffarian and his friends More

Obesity Poses Complex Problem

Professor warns of obesity’s worldwide health impact 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.
Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam Wari
X
Katherine Gypson
May 25, 2015 1:32 AM
For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.
Video

Video On Film: How Dance Defies Iran's Political Oppression

'Desert Dancer' by filmmaker Richard Raymond is based on the true story of a group of young Iranians, who form an underground dance troupe in the Islamic Republic of Iran. This is the latest in a genre of films that focus on dance as a form of freedom of expression against political oppression and social injustice. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Turkey's Ruling Party Trying to Lure Voters in Opposition Stronghold

Turkey’s AK (Justice and Development) Party is seeking a fourth successive general election victory, with the goal of securing two-thirds of the seats in Parliament to rewrite the constitution and change the country's parliamentary system into a presidential one. To achieve that, the party will need to win seats in opposition strongholds like the western city of Izmir. Dorian Jones reports.
Video

Video Millions Flock to Ethiopia Polls

Millions of Ethiopians cast their votes Sunday in the first national election since the 2012 death of longtime leader Meles Zenawi. Mr. Meles' party, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, is almost certain of victory again. VOA's Anita Powell reports from Addis Ababa.
Video

Video Scientists Testing Space Propulsion by Light

Can the sun - the heart of our solar system - power a spacecraft to the edge of our solar system? The answer may come from a just-launched small satellite designed to test the efficiency of solar sail propulsion. Once deployed, its large sail will catch the so-called solar wind and slowly reach what scientists hope to be substantial speed. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video FIFA Trains Somali Referees

As stability returns to the once lawless nation of Somalia, the world football governing body, FIFA, is helping to rebuild the country’s sport sector by training referees as well as its young footballers. Abdulaziz Billow has more from Mogadishu.
Video

Video With US Child Obesity Rates on the Rise, Program Promotes Health Eating

In its fifth year, FoodCorps puts more than 180 young Americans into 500 schools across the United States, where they focus on teaching students about nutrition, engaging them with hands-on activities, and improving their access to healthy foods whether in the cafeteria or the greater community. Aru Pande has more.
Video

Video Virginia Neighborhood Draws People to Nostalgic Main Street

In the U.S., people used to grow up in small towns with a main street lined by family-owned shops and restaurants. Today, however, many main streets are worn down and empty because shoppers have been lured away by shopping malls. But in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, Virginia, main street is thriving. VOA’s Deborah Block reports it has a nostalgic feel with its small restaurants and unique stores.

VOA Blogs