Asean quartet eye run at 2034 World Cup
As many as four countries from south east Asia are considering teaming up on a bid to host the Fifa World Cup in 2034.
Buoyed by the victory of USA-Canada-Mexico in the race to host the 2026 World Cup, the national governing bodies of Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam have shown interest in a joint pitch, which could also include Malaysia.
Prince Abdullah of Malaysia, a Fifa council member, said: "I think there will be no problem if the four countries make a joint bid for the World Cup. It is up to FAM [Football Association of Malaysia] and the government to decide.
"Asean [region] has an opportunity and strength to put a joint bid as it allows three or four countries to co-host the event... similarly like the United States, Canada and Mexico winning the bid as joint hosts in 2026.
“It is time for the Asean region to be given an opportunity, and it will allow the countries to improve their infrastructures and strengthen their respective national teams... there is enough time."
Following a meeting of the council of the Asean Football Federation, the governing body for the sport in southeast Asia, last September, the PSSI and FAT, respectively the soccer associations of Indonesia and Thailand, said they had government backing for a bid for the 2034 World Cup.
An expansion to 48 teams from 2026 means co-hosting of the World Cup is likely to become the norm.
Argentina-Uruguay-Paraguay will bid to stage the 2030 World Cup, and could face competition from England (perhaps with other UK countries) and Morocco, which lost out to North America last week, but said it will return, possibly in partnership with Algeria.
China has long been considered a likely World Cup host, which would appear to hinder the Asean region's chances in 2034.