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Last Updated: Wednesday, 21 November 2007, 16:43 GMT
FA hires big hitters for 2018 bid
Wembley
Wembley is the likely venue for the final should the bid be successful
The Football Association has hired two high-profile consultants to work on England's 2018 World Cup bid.

It has recruited Markus Siegler, Fifa's former director of communications, and Peter Hargitay, the special advisor to Fifa president Sepp Blatter.

Siegler, is a 49-year-old Swiss, who left Fifa after 12 years in September, while the Hungarian-born Hargitay will end his work for Blatter next month.

"It's very important we have such international experience," said the FA.

Siegler was appointed Fifa's director of communications, an executive director of Fifa and member of the Fifa management board in July 2002.

Hargitay and Siegler have set up a lobbying company, the European Consultancy Network, the firm which the FA awarded the contract to.

In an interview with the Financial Times earlier this month, Hargitay said: "Forget marketing, forget promotion. The target audience is not the world.

"The executive committee of Fifa is 24 men, one of whom is Sepp Blatter. And these 24 men award the World Cup.

"It's very important, you know, to be close to Blatter, to make sure he values the bid that comes his way.

"I don't think that in the consulting business anybody has better access and better knowledge of the 24 men than Markus and me.

"We have built a level of trust with a lot of them. Over the years you develop, you might even say, friendships."

England will face strong competition to host the event, with Australia, China, Russia, United States, Belgium and the Netherlands, and Mexico all interested.

606: DEBATE
Scott

Bids need to be officially submitted by 2009, with Fifa's executive committee due to make a decision on the host nation in October 2011.

England memorably hosted the World Cup once before in 1966, claiming their sole triumph in the tournament by beating West Germany 4-2 in the final.



SEE ALSO
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