Qatar Out? AU to Bid for 2022 World Cup Hosting
By Athena Yenko | June 2, 2014 5:14 PM EST
The Football Federation of Australia (FFA) considers re-submitting bids to host the 2022 World Cup if Qatar is found guilty of alleged corruptions and bribery.
"It's a serious development, they're serious allegations and we're looking to see what the response to that will be. It's too early to say whether that re-opens the door of anything that happened a few years ago in terms of Australia's position but it's a bit of a 'watch this space' at this stage," FFA chief executive David Gallop said during a radio interview on SEN.
Gallop also revealed that FFA had long been knowledgeable of Qatar's reported corruption and bribery as it had been participating with FIFA's internal investigation. The investigation had been on-going for months now, Gallop said.
"We've been heavily involved in this now for many months in terms of the investigation that Mr Garcia is carrying out. I'm sure when we're in Brazil for FIFA congress then we'll find out more information but don't be under any illusion that we haven't been involved in all of this for some time now. We've been involved in interviews, production of documents and also following carefully what's been happening away from Australia. We've got people who've been involved for some time now," Gallop said.
The voting process should be re-opened if the allegations against Qatar are proven, FIFA vice-president Jim Joyce publicly announced.
Former England captain and commentator for FIFA 2014, Gary Lineker, also tweeted his support for Australia hosting 2022 World Cup.
"I think FIFA need another vote. The best candidate for 2022, given 2018 is in Europe, was, and still is, Australia," he posted.
Senior football correspondent for London's Daily Telegraph, Henry Winter, is also pinning for Australia to win the bid.
"2022 World Cup should have gone to Australia. Latest allegations against Qatar confirm need for a re-vote @SeppBlatter," Winter tweeted.
FFA is trusting lawyer Michael Garcia's capacity to "uncover the facts," spokesman for FFA said in a statement.
"FFA notes that these are very serious allegations. We have been monitoring FIFA's investigation for many months and will be keenly interested in the response. At this stage we can only continue to encourage a thorough process that uncovers all the facts in a timely way," the spokesman wrote.
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