Update: Qatar will be hosting the 2022 World Cup. Won't write anymore cause I'm pissed.
Update: Russia will be hosting the 2018 World Cup! This will be an incredible opportunity for a "white spot" in the world as far as developed soccer culture. We'll here the announcement of the 2022 World Cup in about 10 minutes! ESPN on TV seems to be a bit ahead of the live stream online, but they're also showing commercials at the moment.
Update: Al Jazeera is reporting that Australia was voted out in the 1st round, Korea out in the 2nd, and Japan in the 3rd. That means it would be between the US and Qatar, basically who most of us thought it would be between.
Update: Voting took longer then FIFA originally thought, so we think the announcement has been delayed about 30 minutes. Follow us on Twitter (@zach_crest1st) to stay up-to-date and you can watch live on ESPN3. They're also trying to keep an eye on it live on Sportscenter on ESPN but you might miss it.
Tomorrow is the day FIFA will announce the hosts of the 2018 & 2022 World Cups. I had the pleasure of tuning in live to watch President Barack Obama, former President Bill Clinton, actor Morgan Freeman and US National Team hero Landon Donovan present the USA's bid to host the '22 WC and, I have to say, it was pretty awesome (I'm also slightly biased...but I'm wearing my USMNT jersey today!!). It successfully outlined the US bid, making sure to note how the 1994 WC that the US hosted still holds the record for attendance and the fact that all of the stadiums that FIFA demanded are already built, where all of the other bids have plans to build the stadiums leading up to the WC.
*I took a break right here to watch the Youtube video of the World's Reaction to Landon Donovan's goal against Algeria in the 2010 World Cup. You should too.*
Originally FIFA listed the US as a medium legal risk because we didn't have required government support, but current President Obama spoke live via teleconference about how the US wants to host in 2022, so I don't know if that trumps our written bid or not. All I know is tomorrow at 10:00 EST on ESPN the hosts will be announced.
Running against the US for the host of the 2022 WC is Australia, Japan, South Korea, and Qatar. Surprisingly, ESPN has Qatar as the best chance to get the bid and Australia the best runner-up. I personally don't think that will be the case, but we'll see. Here are just my brief synopsis of each countries bid.
For: stadiums already built, already shown we can host and do a great job, infrastructure already in place, growing soccer culture, can make FIFA the most money
Against: have already hosted a World Cup and possibly lack of government support, seen as the "safe choice"
For: has government support, the money to built some pretty cool looking stadiums, would help grow the soccer culture there in the area, hasn't hosted in the past
Against: stinking hot summers pose as "health risk to players, FIFA officials and fans", 10+ of the stadiums would be within 30km of each other, would need to build more infrastructure
For: government support, hasn't hosted in the past, growing soccer culture, bring soccer to a "white spot" on FIFA's map of popularity
Against: crappy time zone for FIFA to make money on TV deals in American and European markets (aka their biggest markets)
For: could help bolster peace to an unstable region. or...
Against: we could possibly see more political instability in the next 10 or so years that would cause it to be impossible to host a "world game" in SK. Also has the time zone issue Australia has
For: wants to market it as a "worldwide World Cup where Japan would merely be co-facilitators"
Against: same time zone issue as Australia and South Korea. Plus, they just hosted a World Cup in 2002. It would be very out of character for FIFA to choose Japan again so soon after hosting.
Who do you think deserves to win the job as host? And remember, there are plenty of scandals surrounding the 2018 bids that make me think either Russia or Spain/Portugal will receive the bid. But you can make that choice yourself.