On Tuesday, the Australian Football Association made an important announcement.
They decided not to pursue hosting the 2034 World Cup, leaving the path open for the Saudi kingdom to potentially host the tournament.
Football federations had until October 31 to submit their bids to FIFA for hosting the 2034 World Cup.
However, Australia decided to withdraw from the competition. This decision was shared via a statement on social media, where they mentioned that, after careful consideration, they chose not to bid for the 2034 World Cup.
Australia had initially shown interest in hosting the World Cup and even considered a joint bid with Indonesia. However, when Indonesia decided to support the Saudi bid, Australia decided to step back.
They explained that their focus would be on organizing the 2026 Women’s Asian Cup and the 2029 Club World Cup.
They believe that this, along with hosting the FIFA Women’s World Cup in 2023 and the Brisbane 2032 Olympic Games, would make the upcoming years a fantastic period for Australian football.
Thanks to its recent bid, Saudi Arabia is now the frontrunner to host the World Cup. After Spain, Morocco, and Portugal were selected as hosts for the 2030 edition,
FIFA opened bids for the 2034 tournament, following the principle of continental rotation.
Soon after, Saudi Arabia, already interested in the 2030 World Cup, confirmed its bid for the 2034 event, gaining support from the Asian Football Confederation, making them the leading contender to host the competition.
Similar to Qatar in 2022, Saudi Arabia aims to use the World Cup as a significant tool for diplomacy and influence. The Saudi Arabian Football Federation stated its commitment to delivering a top-notch tournament, drawing inspiration from the nation’s ongoing social and economic progress and its deep passion for football.
Although the final decision is expected from FIFA in late 2024, the suspense is dwindling as Saudi Arabia emerges as a strong candidate for the 2034 edition.