Image credit: Getty Images
The international football governing body FIFA has officially disclosed the hosts for the 2030 FIFA World Cup.
In a first for the sport, the tournament will be spread across three continents.
Morocco in Africa, and Portugal, Spain in Europe have been selected as the trio of nations to jointly host the tournament.
However, the tournament’s first leg will see some matches involve the participation of Argentina, Paraguay, and Uruguay. These three countries in South America will host the first three matches to commemorate the tournament’s 100-year anniversary.
FIFA Council takes key decisions on FIFA World Cup™ editions in 2030 and 2034: Morocco, Portugal and Spain joint bid is the sole candidate to host FIFA World Cup 2030™
— FIFA Media (@fifamedia) October 4, 2023
A global collaboration: Six nations, three continents
The choice of multiple host countries is not the first as the upcoming 2026 FIFA World Cup is being held across Canada, Mexico and the US. The 2026 World Cup will be the first to feature men’s teams from 48 different countries.
The 2030 World Cup takes this even further as matches will unfold across six different countries, spanning three continents.
FIFA announced this decision on Wednesday.
FIFA’s statement reads, “The FIFA Council unanimously agreed that the sole candidacy will be the combined bid of Morocco, Portugal, and Spain, which will host the event in 2030 and qualify automatically from the existing slot allocation.”
Morocco makes history
Morocco will become only the second African country to host the World Cup after South Africa’s successful hosting in 2010.
Additionally, it marks the return of Argentina, which hosted the 1978 World Cup, and Spain, which organised the 1982 edition, to the global football stage.
Portugal and Paraguay will make history by hosting World Cup matches for the first time, further emphasising the inclusivity and global appeal of the sport.
FIFA’s decision aims to bring the World Cup to South America as the tournament will mark its 100th anniversary in 2030.
The co-hosting of the tournament spread across these countries was unanimously approved. FIFA will also organise a unique centenary celebration ceremony in Montevideo, the capital of Uruguay.
This celebration will also include three World Cup matches in Uruguay, Argentina, and Paraguay, paying homage to the tournament’s origin and the vital role played by these nations in the sport’s history.
Saudi Arabia announces bid
In a parallel development, Saudi Arabia has expressed its intention to vie for the hosting rights of the 2034 FIFA World Cup.
The Saudi Arabian football federation issued a statement outlining its vision for the tournament, emphasising its commitment to deliver a world-class event that draws inspiration from the nation’s ongoing social and economic transformation, as well as its profound love for football.
FIFA has clarified that bids for the 2034 World Cup will be restricted to Asia and Oceania, primarily due to the selection of Morocco, Portugal, and Spain for the 2030 tournament.
2034 FIFA World Cup
Aside from Saudi Arabia, Australia is considered a strong contender to host the 2034 World Cup.
Australia recently co-hosted the Women’s World Cup in 2023 with New Zealand, showcasing its capabilities in organising international football events.