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USA news

USA still bidding for 2018

June 13, 2010
By Soccernet staff

Despite widespread reports the 2018 World Cup is almost certainly heading to Europe, the United States Soccer Federation (USFF) still harbours hopes of hosting the tournament.

When the Football Federation of Australia withdrew its bid last week, board chairman Frank Lowy said: "We have been in discussion with FIFA for months and it is that trusting relationship with the leadership of the governing body that has caused us to focus on 2022 and decide to leave the field for 2018 to European contenders."

But USFF president Sunil Gulati told ESPNsoccernet that "Australia's decision doesn't change our thinking at all".

"We've acknowledged that sentiment for a long time," Gulati said about the European challenge. "We acknowledged it the day we announced we were bidding for two World Cups, but that hasn't changed our view."

Gulati added the voting procedures for determining the hosts of both tournaments won't be defined by FIFA until this October. "If we had any alteration of plans, I don't see why we would be doing anything until we know what the voting procedures will be."

The USFF faces stiff opposition from England, Russia and joint bids from Spain/Portugal and Netherlands/Belgium.

FIFA is scheduled to pick the hosts for both the 2018 and 2022 World Cups at a meeting of its 24-man executive committee in Zurich on December 2.