ZURICH: The 2026 World Cup bidders Morocco and the United States – with Canada and Mexico – could learn more about their chances tomorrow writes KEIR RADNEDGE.
Yesterday/Wednesday leaders of both bids were at FIFA headquarters in Zurich to answer the questions from the five members of the world federation’s evaluation task force.
The United group made no comment though Morocco 2026 ceo Hicham El Amrani said: “It was a very constructive meeting, a very positive meeting. We gave them the additional information they were looking for and we look forward to the publication of the report.”
Morocco has complained long and loud about what its officials perceive to be a FIFA-centred bias towards their rival. The aim has been to embarrass the five-man evaluation task force into clearing the bid for the decisive vote in congress in Moscow on June 13.
The stark contrast between the two competing bidders to host the 2026 FIFA World Cup was set out by their presentations last week to the annual congress of international sports journalists’ association AIPS in Brussels.
United stated its commercial credentials by projecting that the North American bid would bring in a record $11bn profit to FIFA’s coffers while Morocco promoted a contrasting concept of a need for the world game to be seen encouraging emerging countries.
FIFA rebuilt the bidding process after the scandals surrounding the awards by the old executive committee in 2010 to Russia for 2018 and Qatar for 2022. Under the new system congress should vote on bids analysed by the task force and approved by the 36-strong FIFA Council.
However the Moroccans, supported by the African confederation and its president Ahmad, have complained that FIFA appeared to have been changing the rules along the way in an attempt to exclude their bid from consideration.