Branding the World of Sports

Did media accusations kill England’s World Cup host bid?

Posted by ZA on November 9, 2010

The announcement for which country (or countries) will host the 2018 World Cup is only a few weeks away.  But even as it approaches the decision of who FIFA will select is way up in the air.  I have predicted that England will be selected as host country for the 2018 World Cup.  I think that England would be the most suitable host for the biggest soccer tournament in the world, since they are one of the most soccer mad countries in the world.  I think most FIFA members have agreed with me on England until recently.

Now reports are coming out saying that England’s bid to host the 2018 World Cup is “blown…completely”.  What is the cause of this potentially epic downfall for England’s World Cup bid?  It appears to be the English media is the culprit.  The UK press has been reporting on corruption within FIFA for over a month now, which apparently has incensed FIFA voting members to the point they are no longer considering England’s bid.

Wow, if England’s bid is really trashed then FIFA has a lot of explaining to do.  Of course we’ll never know the true story because it is easy for FIFA members to vote for Spain/Portugal or Russia instead of England.  But the truth is their votes for other bids are just votes against England, the same way the IOC awarding the 2016 Olympics to Rio was more a vote against the Chicago bid and the USA.  Politics play a part in these organizations, so they vote against who they do not like just as much as they vote for who they think will be the best host.

The press has an obligation to report the facts they find.  The UK media has a responsibility to report wrongdoing they uncovered within FIFA.  To penalize the English bid based on the work of the UK press is asinine and completely unfair.  Of course I’m not surprised because it is the same people voting who are accused of the corruption.  But make no mistake about it, if England is getting jobbed, it is by FIFA on this vote.

Update: The CEO of England’s bid to host the 2018 World Cup is now calling the BBC “unpatriotic” for airing a piece on the FIFA vote scandal three days prior to the WC host selection.  Once again I think the anger here is misplaced.  The media’s job is to cover the story, so criticizing them for doing their job is ridiculous.  Sure the BBC could have aired this story at a different time, but they are publicizing it close to the FIFA vote to ensure maximum exposure.  That helps the media do their other job, which is to sell advertising.

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