FIFA President, Gianni Infantino, has confirmed that Saudi Arabia will be the host of the 2034 World Cup.
Infantino confirmed the development in a post via his Instagram account. Naija News understands that Saudi Arabia’s interest in hosting the biggest football tournament was only submitted on Tuesday.
This news platform reportedly earlier that Australia gave Saudi Arabia an edge to win the bid to host the 2034 FIFA World Cup by withdrawing from the bidding process on Tuesday, October 31, 2023.
The Australia Football Association announced its intention to withdraw from the bidding process hours before FIFA’s deadline for declarations of interest. In the announcement, Australia declared that it would focus its energy on hosting the AFC Women’s Asian Cup in 2026 and the Club World Cup in 2029.
This decision left Saudi Arabia as the sole option to host the planet’s most significant tournament, and by Infantino’s confirmation, it would now be the third World Cup organized in the Asian continent after South Korea and Japan hosted it in 2002, and Qatar in 2022.
The climatic conditions in the Wahhabi kingdom will require the tournament to be held in winter, as was the case with the World Cup hosted by Qatar last year.
It is worth noting that Saudi Arabia had applied for the 2030 World Cup, but will now wait another four years to organize their own World Cup.
“The Greatest Show on Earth will be hosted by Canada, Mexico, and the United States in 2026 in North America. The next two editions of the FIFA World Cup will be held in Africa (Morocco), and Europe (Portugal and Spain) – with three matches played in South America (Argentina, Paraguay, and Uruguay) – in 2030, and in Asia (Saudi Arabia) in 2034. Three editions, five continents, and ten countries are involved in the tournament. This is truly making football global,” the FIFA President wrote on his Instagram page.
Since FIFA had already secured the hosts for the upcoming World Cups from 2026 to 2034, Infantino explained that “The bidding processes were approved by consensus through the FIFA Council, where all six confederations are represented, after constructive dialogue and extensive consultation. Thanks to everyone who participated in this positive exchange.”
Infantino stressed the importance of unity among the six confederations that comprise FIFA, highlighting that football has the power to bring the world together like no other sport.
He emphasized that the World Cup is an ideal platform to promote a message of inclusivity and harmony, showcasing how diverse cultures can unite and gain a deeper understanding of one another.
Despite the current state of an increasingly divided and hostile world, Infantino believes that football has the ability to unite people like nothing else. He concludes by stating that these moments of unity are crucial, and the upcoming FIFA World Cups serve as a unique force for good in this regard.