England World Cup “dead in the water” as UEFA likely to support Spain or Portugal after Euro | Football | sport
DCMS committee chairman Julian Knight MP admitted the UK should not waste time on a “costly” bid for the World Cup in 2030, as hopes of hosting the major tournament were dashed at the follow-up to the events of the Euro 2020 final. The UK government debated ways to tackle abuse and racism online after black English footballers were attacked for missing their penalty shoot-out . But Mr Knight said UEFA was very concerned about safety and fears that a repeat of the Hillsborough disaster could happen again if the Wembley stadium issues are not addressed.
Speaking to Sky News, Mr Knight shared his honest thoughts on Britain and Ireland’s joint bid for the 2030 World Cup.
He told the program: “I hate to say, [it’s] dead in the water, but I wasn’t optimistic before.
âBecause frankly we don’t have a good reputation within the wider football community.
“But UEFA, and we need UEFA’s support to make it into the World Cup, they have the option of supporting Spain or Portugal, or ourselves.
“Frankly, after this performance I think it’s much more likely that they will go for Spain and Portugal than for us.”
Mr Knight was then asked if he thought the government should bother to put aside a bit for 2030.
He replied, âI think the process is expensive.
âWe were humiliated the last time around, I think we were the only country that voted for ourselves.
“And I really hope there is some real thinking about what we’re really doing in terms of the World Cup.
âIt’s more than frankly World Cups and that sort of thing – it’s really about safety.
“I would listen to some of the crush stories and stuff like that, it was awfully reminiscent of Hillsborough.
“What we need to do first, before we think about a World Cup bid, is sort that out now and find out exactly what went wrong and make sure that something like it doesn’t happen again. “
Images emerged from the Euro 2020 final of fans rushing through security and turnstiles to enter the stadium without tickets.
As the number of stewards and police exceeded the recommended number, supporters clashed with the police and each other to enter the stadium.
Many were seen climbing fences and storming the stadium gates to be greeted by more fans fighting against the invasion.
Wembley was kept at around two-thirds of its capacity following a Covid event experience that allowed attendees to enter only if they were negative or double stung for COVID-19.
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