Australia Declines Bid for 2034 FIFA World Cup Hosting
Football Australia, the governing body of soccer in Australia, announced on October 31, 2023, that it will not pursue the bid to host the FIFA World Cup in 2034. This decision comes amid growing competition, particularly from Saudi Arabia, which is strongly favored by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) to host the event.
Factors Leading to Withdrawal
The core of Australia’s decision lies in the backing of Saudi Arabia’s bid by the AFC earlier in October. With the AFC’s support, Saudi Arabia’s position as the likely host for the 2034 World Cup strengthened, diminishing Australia’s chances significantly.
Implications for Australia
With the withdrawal, Australia has shifted its focus towards other international soccer events. It now aims to host the 2029 Club World Cup and the 2026 Women’s Asian Cup. It sees these tournaments as viable opportunities for bolstering its standing in the international soccer community. The move also follows a failed $46 million bid, although the specifics of this bid were not provided.
Saudi Arabia’s Fortified Position
The backing of the AFC for Saudi Arabia practically assures its position as the host for the 2034 World Cup. This development is a significant step towards bringing the World Cup to the Middle East, expanding the global footprint of the tournament.
Future Endeavours of Football Australia
Despite the setback, Football Australia remains optimistic about its role in the international soccer landscape. By aiming for other prestigious tournaments, it continues to pursue its goal of promoting soccer within Australia and showcasing its capabilities on the international stage.