China’s interest in hosting the World Cup is gathering momentum as the president of the most populous country on earth, Xi Jinping meet FIFA President, Gianni Infantino in Beijing on Wednesday.
The meeting is scheduled to hold at the palatial Great Hall of the People’s Republic of China.
“We hope we can strengthen our cooperation on football with international organisations, including FIFA, and also with other countries.”
“As to whether China will host the World Cup, this is a dream shared by many Chinese. We also hope we can see that happen as soon as possible,” spokesman, Lu Kang, of the foreign ministry said in a press conference.
Speculations are rife that the meeting is Jinping’s way of wooing Infantino for a favorable slot in 2030 or 2034.
The sports-loving Chinese president is eager to host the world tournament with the hope that his nation’s national team could win the most-coveted football title.
China is placed 82nd on the world ranking, just after Benin and Faroe Islands and may not make the qualification for Russia in 2018.
The country had an unfavorable record at the World Cup, while in 2002, it was beaten by all other group members without securing a single goal.
China has no hope of hosting the tournament so soon after its Asian Football Confederate, Qatar, already have the hosting rights for the 2022 World Cup, following FIFA’s standing rotational policy aimed at switching between host continental governing bodies.
Vice President of the Chinese Football Association, Zhang Jian, who also doubles as FIFA council member, involved in forming its global policy, stated he would support Chinese for the 2030 edition.
Not long ago, 3 major companies in China have endorsed sponsorship partnership with FIFA, another evidence supporting China’s interest.
China also has UEFA to contend with for the 2030 World Cup, as the European body is billed for a slot too.