The government is willing to back an English bid for the 2018 World Cup, says Sports Minister Richard Caborn.
The new Wembley stadium would be a focal point of England's bid
Caborn revealed Chancellor Gordon Brown, who met Uefa president Lennart Johansson on Wednesday, was "very, very keen" on the idea.
Asked whether the government would support a bid, Caborn told BBC Radio 4: "Absolutely. I have no doubt."
The Football Association is weighing up its options but chief executive Brian Barwick said: "We would like it."
The 2010 World Cup is being held in South Africa, with the 2014 tournament set to go to a South American country.
From 2010, every third World Cup is expected to be awarded to a European country.
Barwick added: "If that is the year when it comes back to Europe, we're going to go for it.
"We don't have to decide now how we go about it, we have to learn the lessons of when we didn't get these things and learn the lessons of when we did - like the Olympics.
"I think (bid leader) Lord Coe was very clever, a brilliant guy and a really huge contributory factor, as was the playing of the major officials at the right time."
Coe has already indicated he would be willing to assist the FA in its bid.
England's hopes have also been boosted by the support of Uefa president Lennart Johansson.
"We would certainly support such a project," he said.
Fifa will make its decision in 2010.