Spain and Portugal will reportedly add Ukraine to their joint bid for the 2030 FIFA World Cup.
Should the countries be granted hosting duties, Ukraine — which was invaded by Russia on Feb. 24, 2022 — would likely host one group in the competition, promoting the idea that soccer can “rebuild hope and peace,” according to a report from The Times.
- An official announcement is anticipated in the coming days during a press conference at UEFA’s headquarters.
- The governing body is expected to fully back the bid, as it wants the World Cup to take place solely in Europe.
UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin recently said he is “sure that the 2030 World Cup will be played in Spain and Portugal,” adding that “we will do everything possible to help two countries that are passionate, live and breathe football, and that have a good infrastructure.”
The countries will go up against a joint bid from Argentina, Uruguay, Chile, and Paraguay, as well as a reported joint bid from Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Greece — the latter of which FIFA president Gianni Infantino reportedly likes, due to the inclusion of an African nation.
Spain hosted the World Cup in 1982. Portugal and Ukraine haven’t hosted the tournament but have been home to the European Championship finals in 2004 and 2012, respectively.
The 2022 World Cup runs Nov. 21-Dec. 18 in Qatar, which expects the tournament to add up to $17 billion to its economy. The U.S., Canada, and Mexico will host the 2026 tournament.