MADRID (AFP) — FIFA president Sepp Blatter hopes Spain will bid for the 2018 World Cup, possibly jointly with neighbouring Portugal, Spain's sports press quoted him as saying on Tuesday.
"The time has come for Spain to organise another World Cup. I would like the president of the Spanish Football Federation to make official Spain's bid for the 2018 World Cup," he said Monday in Zurich, sports daily AS reported.
Blatter was speaking at the Swiss headquarters of football's world governing body to a visiting delegation made up of members of Spanish clubs and the Spanish Football Federation.
Spain hosted the 1982 World Cup which was won by Italy who beat West Germany 3-1 in the final held at Real Madrid's Santiago Bernabeu stadium.
In November the president of the Portuguese Football Federation, Gilberto Madail, proposed a joint bid with Spain to host the 2018 World Cup.
The president of the Spanish Football Federation, Angel Maria Villar, did not rule out a bid to host football's global showpiece but remained prudent when asked about the possibility by reporters in Zurich.
"It's an option which we will study together with the Spanish government, but without haste," AS quoted him as saying.
FIFA will name the host country of the 2018 World Cup in 2011.
The sole official candidate to date is England while Australia, China, Mexico, Russia, Uruguay, the United States and Argentina have expressed their interest in hosting the event.
South Africa will be the first African nation to host the tournament in 2010 and Brazil will stage the 2014 World Cup.
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