Wenger says Fifa World Cup bidding process is from ‘Middle Ages’

Saturday, December 4, 2010

LONDON - Hurt by the failure of England’s 2018 campaign to host the World Cup, Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has likened Fifa’s bidding process to something from the “Middle Ages”.
Wenger said he could not understand how England got only two votes in Fifa’s bidding process for the 2018 World Cup.

“I am very sad - I don’t believe that Fifa was really conscious of how much it meant to people here. The bid team put some unbelievable work in. I’m speechless because I don’t understand,” The Telegraph quoted Wenger, as saying.

“The way to decide looked to me, in fairness, a little bit from the Middle Ages. It doesn’t look right in modern life that people have to go over there and lobby and say, ‘please believe in us’. Frankly, it looks a little bit that you have to flatter them to get the World Cup,” he said.

“I don’t think that is right. You would like to have much more technical than human criteria. It is difficult to explain to people that the technical bid of England was perfect but you get only two votes. That is not rational,” Wenger said.

Wenger wants the current bidding system reformed so that each country is assessed against a set of clearly defined criteria.

“You could imagine that you have 100 criteria with different weights and you put it in a computer and the best comes out,” he said.

“The fact that a country has never hosted the World Cup before could be one of the criteria but that cannot be the only one that is taken into consideration,” he added. (ANI)

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