Celebrities Arrive for World Cup Decision Day Tomorrow


The football world is holding its collective breath today as decision day looms. Tomorrow, the FIFA Executive in Zurich will decide which nation will host the 2018 and 2022 World Cups.

Celebrities have been arriving in the Swiss city including Bill Clinton, David Cameron, David Beckham, Landon Donovan, Morgan Freeman, Elle MacPherson, Zenedine Zidane, but not Vladimir Putin, the Russian President, who used his absence as an excuse to remind FIFA of the campaign the English media had subjected them to.

Russia is seen as the main rival to England for the 2018 tournament.

MacPherson is in Zurich to Support Australian Bid

MacPherson was there to support Australia’s bid for the 2022 tournament and Zidane to support Qatar’s.

The bidders for 2022 made their presentations today and those for 2018 early tomorrow. Sky Sports is reporting that England are the favourites again, 24 hours after many doomsayers had said the broadcast of the Panorama program, ‘FIFA’s Dirty Secrets’, had scuppered their chances.

They are quoting the arrival of Prince William and David Beckham as turning factors. Putin’s failure to attend is thought to be harming his country’s chances.

The decisions are expected to be announced at a ceremony starting at 7am Pacific Time.

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USA BID – By The Numbers…


Soccer in the United States

  • There are over 4 million registered soccer players in the United States and over 15,000 licensed coaches, but the total number of active soccer participants (registered and casual players/coaches) is estimated at 15 million people

o        Roughly two-thirds of that group is high school aged and younger

o        Women make up almost 35% of the soccer players in the U.S., and it is now the most popular NCAA sport for women, with nearly 200% growth since 1990

  • Major League Soccer is in its 15th season and currently has 16 teams, with Philadelphia in its inaugural season and Vancouver and Portland set to join the league in 2011
  • World Cup USA 1994 is still the most successful event in FIFA history, setting an all-time attendance record of 3.5 million spectators that stands today
    • In the first three phases of ticket sales, soccer fans in the U.S. purchased the largest amount of tickets for the 2010 FIFA World Cup, outside of the host nation South Africa.
    • Viewership for the average minute of all 64 matches from the 2006 FIFA World Cupâ„¢ in Germany was 4.4 million persons and the final match featuring Italy vs. France drew an average audience of 17.0 million persons between the Univision and ABC network broadcasts

Looking Ahead to 2022

  • The USA Bid Committee estimates an all-time record five million tickets would be sold for a 2022 FIFA World Cup in the United States with an estimated $1 billion in ticket revenues, based on the 21 stadiums featuring an average capacity of 77,000

o        The 18 cities chosen for inclusion in the official bid book to FIFA on May 14 are (alphabetically): Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Indianapolis, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Miami, Nashville, New York, Philadelphia, Phoenix,
San Diego, Seattle, Tampa and Washington, D.C.

  • Research has indicated that a World Cup in the U.S. could expect to deliver an economic impact of roughly $5 billion dollars (in today’s $), which account for $400 million to $600 million dollars to any host city

o        It is expected that each of the host cities will stage four to six games during the 31 day tournament.

  • With 11-to-12 percent of the population being foreign-born, a US World Cup will ensure high attendance for almost every match played

o        For example, a Saudi Arabia vs. Morocco match in 1994 drew 76,322 fans to Giants Stadium

Short-Term Timeline

  • May 14, 2010: Official Bid Book delivered to FIFA
  • Oct. 28, 2010: FIFA Executive Committee met in Zurich to set voting procedures for 2018 and 2022 World Cup decision
  • Dec. 1, 2010: Bidding nations for 2018 and 2022 World Cups make final presentations to FIFA Executive Committee in Zurich
  • Dec. 2, 2010: FIFA to announce the countries chosen to host the 2018 and 2022 World Cups

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  1. Whew, at least you didn’t skip a page……

    Editor: Some people only tune in the day before the big story and welcome being able to find the back-story in one place.

  2. Two mistakes, one by Freeman and one by Clinton. Forgot a page and forgot a name. Will this be what cost us the World Cup! In a game a world class team would put these mistakes in the back of the net.