Rabat - Morocco has asked Spain and Portugal to form a trio to host the 2030 World Cup, according to Moroccan media.
Rabat – Morocco has asked Spain and Portugal to form a trio to host the 2030 World Cup, according to Moroccan media.
The 2030 bid will be Morocco’s sixth attempt to convince the footballing world of its ability to host the sport’s most celebrated tournament, following the country’s most recent failure in June at the hand of the North American trio (the US, Canada, and Mexico).
Most importantly, though, a successful Morocco-Spain-Portugal trio would be the first time that the World Cup would be hosted on two different continents.
Choosing realism over the pan-Maghrebi dream
According to Al Yaoum 24, the three countries’ sporting authorities have met several times in recent months, and the agreement has already been drafted. The decision will reportedly be officially announced in the coming weeks, as the three countries have decided to only let FIFA know about their plan once everything is settled.
The 2030 FIFA World Cup is expected to attract the attention of footballing heavyweights. Paraguay, Argentina, and Uruguay, have already announced that they will bid to host as a trio. The South Americans plan to campaign on the notion that Uruguay, which hosted the first World Cup in 1930, should be given the right to host the tournament on its 100th anniversary.
England, meanwhile, has given signals of its interest to join the FIFA 2030 contest. Although the European country has yet to announce its final decision, statements and comments from the government, the English FA, and English football fans suggest an equally strong interest.
And according to Al Yaoum, Morocco, which has experienced on numerous occasions the high stakes and tough competition that the scramble for the World Cup’s hosting rights entails, has chosen to form a trio with its Iberian neighbors rather than with its North African neighbors.
While there have been reports of a Maghreb trio including Algeria, Morocco, and Tunisia, it was expected that the tense political atmosphere in the region—namely between Algiers and Rabat—would be major obstacle. The tension kept alive, at least from a Moroccan perspective, the possibility of joining forces with Spain and Portugal.
Whereas activists, football fans, and cultural workers had expected that football would unify a divided Maghreb, authorities seem to have chosen—should Al Yaoum’s allegations be true—a more politically realistic partnership.
“Morocco will bid to host the World Cup in 2030—there is no doubt about that. But we have not yet decided on the co-hosts. The decision will be politically discussed,” said Fouzi Lekjaa, the president of the Royal Moroccan Football Federation (FRMF) when asked whether Morocco would definitely bid in a trio with Algeria and Tunisia.