FIFA gives 2030 World Cup to Spain, Portugal, 4 other countries – POLITICO

The 2030 men’s football World Cup will be held in Spain, Portugal and Morocco, with one match each taking place in Uruguay, Argentina and Paraguay, FIFA announced on Wednesday.

World football’s governing body said Uruguay would also hold a centenary ceremony in Montevideo, where the first World Cup took place in 1930.

With Europe, Africa and South America set to host games, it is the first World Cup that will span three continents. It also paves the way for big-spending Saudi Arabia to potentially host the next World Cup.

Earlier this year, POLITICO reported that Saudi Arabia was conducting stadium diplomacy in a bid to host the 2030 tournament. FIFA announced Wednesday that the Asian and Oceanian continental federations will now be invited to bid for the 2034 tournament.

And Riyadh didn’t waste any time. Shortly after FIFA’s decision on 2030, Saudi Arabia announced it would bid for 2034.

For 2030, FIFA sees the trans-continental tournament as a way to spread “peace, tolerance and inclusion.”

“The FIFA Council, representing the entire world of football, unanimously agreed to celebrate the centenary of the FIFA World Cup, whose first edition was played in Uruguay in 1930, in the most appropriate way,” said FIFA President Gianni Infantino.

Spain, Portugal and Morocco will host the bulk of the tournament, and those countries will all qualify automatically for the tournament.

“Two continents — Africa and Europe — united not only in a celebration of football but also in providing unique social and cultural cohesion. What a great message of peace, tolerance and inclusion,” Infantino added.

This story has been updated.

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