Victorian Premier gets in early to sway opinion on a 2022 Melbourne World Cup.
Melbourne has put its hand up early in the hopes of securing a World Cup in 2022, as FIFA’s corruption scandal deepens.
If the 2022 winning host city Qatar is stripped of its hosting rights, Victoria’s Premier Daniel Andrews has said Melbourne could easily host the tournament.
“Victoria is ready and willing to support a bid to bring the World Cup to Australia,” he said.
“There’s no greater stage to host the World Cup final than the MCG.”
While Australia’s initial bid for the 2022 World Cup had it hosted in Sydney, Melbourne’s politicians having been trying to sway opinion this week. Melbourne’s MCG was a part of the original bid, but there has been talk of including Etihad Stadium, AAMI Park and Geelong’s Simonds Stadium as venues in Victoria.
Victorian Sports Minister John Eren says it would come easily for Melbourne to host thanks to its ample sporting infrastructure.
“We could step in, we could help out. We are prepared to take on that challenge. For us, it comes easily,” he said.
NSW hit back at the speculation, with Premier Mike Baird saying he would do whatever was necessary to secure hosting rights for Sydney after corruption cases are settled.
“I’ve seen comments that people wouldn’t want to undertake such a bid unless there was reform in FIFA but I can assure you we’ll be the first state to sign up if we’re given a green light on that,” he said.
“The World Cup would be a world event that we’d be very proud to host and we’d do everything that we needed to do to put us in a position to secure it.”
The prospect of seeing Greece’s national team in the same place as the Socceroos will be a huge coup for the Greek Australian community if the competition heads Down Under.