Date: 15th October 2009 at 10:40am
Written by:

From Vital England:

Manchester is one of 16 cities currently vying to be one of the final 12 selected as host cities for England’s world cup bid, but what does it have to offer?

We find out, as we ask Zae what they think it can bring to the table for the world cup bid…

1) Manchester has applied to be a host city, what are the pros of this?
Well, it’s a real boost for economics, tourism – you know, the usual stuff. And it would be fun to see World Cup games at Old Trafford, as simple as that. That’s the biggest pro.

2) And the cons?
Can’t think of any, although a few people might be upset with all the noise and crowdedness World Cup games invariably create.

3) Is Old Trafford up to the task of staging a world cup game at the moment – if not will it come 2018/2022?
Yes, it is. It was good enough for the 2003 Champions League final and the stadium has only improved since that.

4) What is Manchester most famous for?
For United, obviously! But really, what else it would be? I somehow don’t think that Oasis is the first thing to pop into anyone’s mind upon hearing the word “Manchester”.

5) What would it mean to you to see the world cup converge on Manchester if successful?
Euro 96 was a good buzz and as I said it would be fun to watch World Cup games at Old Trafford (even for someone like me who’s not a big fan of international football). But nobody in the city will be overawed, to be honest – World Cup games are no bigger than a Champions League or a UEFA Cup final, and Manchester have hosted both in recent years. But it will be fun while it lasts and I can see how a semi-final, involving England, would be hugely exciting, almost as exciting as a big Champions League night for United.

6) Come on, hand on heart, tinted specs off, totally unbiased view will Manchester be successful with the host city bid?
I can’t really imagine any England World Cup bid not involving Old Trafford – it’s the second biggest ground in the country, for goodness sake! Wembley, Old Trafford, Emirates, St. James Park – these are no-brainers. Eastlands will have more difficulty with getting in on the plan, especially if Liverpool ever build that proposed new stadium.

7) Most importantly, do you think that England will be successful with the 2018/2022 world cup bid anyway?
The last time England attempted a World Cup bid, the diplomacy side wasn’t handled with particular expertise – or, to put it bluntly, the FA messed it up and they were shown up by the Germans. This time they need to display a little more guile. There are plenty of bidders and to be honest I think FIFA will give it to one of the “new faces”, Qatar or maybe Russia or Australia, that would fit their policy – after all, if infrastructure and the likes were decisive, Moscow would never have got a Champions League final…

8) Anything else you want to add?
I happen to think that England hosting a World Cup would be good for English football, just as Euro 96 was – and that was an excellent tournament as well. But even now, nine years ahead of any possible World Cup, I shudder to think how mercilessly the England team would be hyped up…

Full article: England – What Manchester has to offer (United).