Saudi Arabia officially expressed interest in hosting the 2034 FIFA World Cup.
The bidding process for the 2034 World Cup is fast-tracked.
FIFA sets tight deadlines for the bidding process.
On Monday, Saudi Arabia officially expressed its interest in hosting the men’s World Cup in 2034 by submitting a letter of intent and a signed declaration to FIFA.
The bidding process for the 2034 contest was fast-tracked after FIFA decided to have only one candidate for the 2030 World Cup, which will be jointly hosted by six nations across Europe, Africa, and South America.
The 2030 World Cup will follow the inaugural 48-team tournament in 2026 hosted by the United States, Mexico, and Canada. This allows the 2034 edition to return to Asia, 12 years after Qatar hosted the 2022 World Cup.
FIFA set tight deadlines, requiring formal expressions of interest by October 31 and signed bidding agreements, supported by national governments, by November 30.
Australia had initially expressed interest in hosting the 2034 tournament after co-hosting the women’s edition successfully with New Zealand.
However, they now have a limited time of eight weeks to produce a bidding agreement and may face challenges in meeting FIFA’s criteria, such as having seven existing stadiums on a minimum slate of 14 soccer-suitable venues with at least a 40,000-seating capacity.
On the other hand, Saudi Arabia, which is gearing up to host the 2027 Asian Cup, meets the FIFA criteria and has garnered support from “over 70” of FIFA’s 211 member federations.