Theresa May says government would back UK & Ireland World Cup bid

Prime minister Theresa May has said that a joint UK and Ireland bid to host the 2030 World Cup would receive backing from her government.

UK prime minister Theresa May   -  Getty Images

A joint bid to host the 2030 World Cup from the UK and Republic of Ireland would receive "full support" from the government, according to Theresa May.

UK prime minister May maintained that the final decision over whether to proceed with a bid to host the centenary edition of the World Cup would lie with the Football Associations of England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and Ireland.

London, Glasgow and Dublin will host 15 matches and the Europe-wide Euro 2020 tournament, with the semifinals and final to take place at Wembley.

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Speaking ahead of her Conservative Party's annual conference in Birmingham, May said: "Following the excitement of this summer's World Cup, the English FA are working together with the FAs of Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and Ireland to explore whether there could be a joint bid to host the 2030 World Cup."

"The decision on whether to bid is, of course, for the football associations to make. But, if they decide to go forward, they can count on this government's full support."

England hosted and won the World Cup in 1966 and launched an unsuccessful bid for the 2018 tournament. The last major international football competition to take place in the UK was Euro 96, which was also staged solely in England.