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Regional: Thailand pitching ambitious plan to co-host 2034 World Cup

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PHOTO: stadiumastro.com

The 2018 event has barely started and local pundits are already pondering a pitch for the 2034 World Cup, 16 years away! The Straits Times is reporting that Thailand, Indonesia and Vietnam are set to launch a bid to joint host the 2034 FIFA World Cup, according to reports.

Speaking at an event held on June 16, Fifa Executive Committee member Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah spoke positively of the possibility of ASEAN nations co hosting the tournament.

“The opportunity for us (Asean) to bid conceivably has its strengths because three to four countries can share, as what USA, Mexico and Canada did to win the bid and become the 2026 host. In fact the time has come for countries in the Asean region to be given the opportunity. In this regard, we hope the infrastructure and strength of Asean’s football teams would have been consolidated by then”, he told the Straits Times.

“We have 16 years, which should be sufficient,” he added.

Malaysia has also been earmarked as a potential joint host.

Last week FIFA announced that the US, Canada and Mexico will jointly host the 2026 World Cup. This isn’t the first time an ASEAN bid to host the 2034 World Cup has been mooted. Last year, it was reported that Thailand, Indonesia and Myanmar would pool resources and bid to host the tournament. Singapore was also reported to be interested in joining a consortium to host the tournament.

South Korea and Japan remain the only Asian nations to host the World Cup, holding the event in 2002, while Qatar is scheduled to host the 2022 tournament. While the ASEAN region has some experience of hosting international football tournaments, clearly none on the scale of the World Cup.

In 1997 Malaysia hosted the Under 20 World Cup, while Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia and Vietnam co-hosted the 2007 AFC Asian Cup.

It is understood the deadline to submit bids to host the 2034 World Cup is 2026.

SOURCE: Straits Times.

 

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