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Page last updated at 16:15 GMT, Tuesday, 28 September 2010 17:15 UK

England set to end 2022 World Cup bid to focus on 2018

Fifa delegation pose outside Wembley
A Fifa delegation recently visited England to assess the 2018 bid

England say they will withdraw from the race to host the 2022 World Cup and focus on a bid for 2018 if the United States formally end its 2018 interest.

David Dein, the international president of England's bid, told a media briefing in London he expected the US to pull out of the 2018 race soon.

"Consequently we will almost certainly withdraw from 2022," he added.

However, a spokesman for US Soccer told BBC Sport they are still officially bidding for both tournaments.

Recently, US Soccer chairman Sunil Gulati intimated that they would withdraw their bid for the 2018 event if they felt it was in their best interests to do so.

Representatives from the England 2018 bid were unavailable for further comment when contacted by BBC Sport.

606: DEBATE

Fifa's executive committee will vote to decide the hosts of both the 2018 and 2022 events on 2 December in Zurich.

Uefa president Michel Platini said last month he was determined to bring the 2018 tournament to Europe and Dein feels England have put up a strong campaign.

"We have been in six countries in the last 13 days and we desperately want to win the right to stage the World Cup," said Dein.

"We are passionate about it and believe it will be a sporting success, a social success and a financial success and that is the message we want to get to everybody and the executive committee members.

"Of course Michel Platini has a vote, I don't know how he is going to vote, all I know is that he wants the finals to be in Europe."

Should the US withdraw from 2018 and England subsequently end their interest in 2022, it would formalise the continental and political groupings to stage each event.

The battle to host the 2018 event would be between European nations, whilst the race for the 2022 tournament would see the US competing with four rival Asian bidders.

At present, England, Russia, the United States and joint bids from Spain/Portugal and Netherlands/Belgium are bidding for 2018 - but they also remain, technically, in the race for 2022.

Qatar, South Korea, Japan and Australia are concentrating on 2022.

However, if the US pulls out of the 2018 race, none of the Europeans would bid for 2022 as one continent cannot host successive finals.



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see also
Beckham steps up 2018 bid effort
21 Sep 10 |  Football
Dein takes key World Cup bid role
18 Feb 10 |  Football
England 2018 bid team streamlined
12 Nov 09 |  Football
England 'must improve 2018 bid'
07 Oct 09 |  Football


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