England 2018 stresses legacy

Sport Business News

The England 2018 bid had to exceed the expectations of FIFA's six–man inspection team in order to convince them the nation should host the World Cup, according to Andy Anson.

The FIFA inspectors, led by Chilean national federation president Harold Mayne–Nicholls, on Thursday 26 August 2010 completed their four–day visit to England by issuing a glowing closing statement, with one question mark – accommodation. Bid CEO Anson insisted that was merely a technicality which would be resolved by the following week, with England 2018 required to satisfy FIFA's requirements by the end of September and a decision to be made on the hosts of the 2018 and 2022 World Cups to be taken by the FIFA executive committee on 2 December 2010 in Zurich. Through the Premier League, England's world–class stadia and facilities are world–renowned and Anson insisted the 2018 bid team had to show Mayne–Nicholls and his five colleagues what more there was on offer. The inspectors' report will be delivered to the 24 members of the FIFA executive committee in October. Anson added: "The technical bid and the inspection visit are very important for us. I think everyone knows with the strength of the Premier League and the Football League that we have a lot of the right facilities. We had to go beyond that and show FIFA that we've really worked hard to exceed what we've had to do. That's what our mantra has been. "Whilst rivals to England for the 2018 World Cup finals, which are expected to be awarded to Europe, have played up their development credentials, Anson, who is not allowed to comment on other bids, insisted England 2018 too had a lot to offer worldwide. "We've got a very, very strong Premier League – we're very fortunate in that regard – so to get the opportunity to give something back that the World Cup would give us is very important, " said Anson. "The focus on global legacy means there's something that we are giving back to the rest of the world. "Anson stressed the end of the visit does not conclude England 2018's lobbying process and, with fewer than 100 days remaining before the announcement, the bid team will be working harder than ever to claim the votes of FIFA's executive committee. He added: "We've got to go and convince them that this is the strongest bid, hopefully they'll see that and hopefully on December 2 they'll vote for us. I think it's really convincing them that our case is the strongest. "Mayne–Nicholls told Anson that a number of the aspects of the bid were "perfect" before he departed for Manchester Airport. "All the needs and objectives of our visit were met and we are positive that the World Cup in England in 2018 or 2022 would be a great experience with a long–lasting legacy for the country and its people as well as for football worldwide, " he said. Mayne–Nicholls praised the concept of visiting teams being hosted by domestic professional teams, the world–class stadia and infrastructure surrounding football and in the country as a whole, but is awaiting proof the required accommodation will be available. "One thing FIFA are particularly focused on is accommodation as we need a very high number of quality rooms, " he added. "This is why we ask all bidders for a certain number of contracted hotel rooms. We trust that you will be able to fulfil the necessary requirements. "About The Sport Briefing This story has been reproduced with the kind permission of The Sport Briefing. The Sport Briefing is published by PA Sport and can be found at: www. thesportbriefing. comSubscribers to Major Events International can take advantage ofexcellent discounted rates for The Sport Briefing. Sign up now to receive a 20% discount on your annual licence for TheSport Briefing. Special rates are also available for company–widesubscriptions. Subscribers receive a daily digest or up to 30 stories from across every sector of the global sports industry, access to the 24–sevenwww. thesportbriefing. com website and a hard copy of the quarterlymagazine. For more information, email info@thesportbriefing. com or call +(0) 44 207 963 7888.

Additional information