— Published 20 October 2023

Australia still thinking about the 2034 World Cup

The huge shadow cast by Saudi Arabia and a very tight schedule do not give it an advantage, but Australia is continuing to think about a bid for the World Cup in 2034. James Johnson (pictured above), chief executive of Football Australia, explained this on Thursday 19 October at the Leaders Sports Business conference in London: “We are currently in the process of bidding for the Women’s Asian Cup in 2026. The logic is to extend the legacy of the Women’s World Cup that we organised this year with New Zealand. But we are also looking at two other major tournaments, this time on the men’s side: the Club World Cup in 2029, and the World Cup in 2034.” At one stage associated with Indonesia, and even Singapore and Malaysia, in a joint bid for the 2034 World Cup, Australia has lost its ally since the Indonesian Football Association announced its decision to finally support the Saudi project. It could have been a fatal blow, but James Johnson’s comments suggest that the case for the 2034 World Cup has not yet been completely buried. The Australians will have to move quickly, and even very quickly, as FIFA has set 31 October as the deadline for submitting bids.