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Mondial-2026: Morocco still and always candidate

Ⓒ AFP/Archives – STRINGER – | The head of the Moroccan Royal Football Federation Fouzi Lekjaal speaking at the CAF Symposium in Rabat on 18 July 2017

The ultra-favorite status of the Trans-American file does not change anything: Morocco announced Friday to leave for a fifth bid for the organization of the World Cup, for the 2026 edition.

The Moroccan Federation said it had filed its request with FIFA four months after the US / Canada / Mexico joint declaration of candidacy, considered by the observers as widely favored to organize the first World Cup to 48 teams.

“Morocco considers that it is capable of organizing a World Cup. We have the necessary infrastructure in terms of stadiums, transport, hotel and sanitary capacity,” AFP told Moroccan Youth Minister Of Sports, Rachid Talbi Alami.

Barely elected last March, the president of the Confederation of African Football (CAF), Malagasy Ahmad Ahmad, was “convinced” that Morocco could organize the World Cup-2026, during a visit to the country . A statement that echoed the remarks made at the end of 2016 by the president of the FIFA, Gianni Infantino.

Morocco is “in a position to host the Football World Cup with regard to its infrastructure and organizational capacity,” he said, without moving forward. In fact, the successor of the sulphurous Sepp Blatter himself pushed a joint US bid for the World Cup following that in Qatar in 2022.

The enlargement to 48 teams wanted by Infantino – which allows to allocate additional places to each confederation – had been largely defended by the North American federations, which supported the election of Italo-Switzerland in February 2016.

– Five failures, a rivalry –

“The challenge is to guarantee a craze, recipes and spectacle,” said AFP Aziz Daoudi, a former athlete and sports columnist.

In recent years, the kingdom has embarked on a vast field of professionalization of its football, while building new stadiums: today it has six stadiums meeting international standards and four others are under construction. Moreover, the country has multiplied the applications to other competitions to mark the ground for the organization of a World Cup.

It hosted two editions of the World Cup of clubs in 2013 and 2014, and was to host the African Cup of Nations in 2015, before dropping out due to fears related to the Ebola virus.

Some media outlets have spoken in recent weeks about a possible joint candidature from Morocco, Spain and Portugal to organize the 2026 World Cup. The Minister of Youth and Sports, however, told AFP that this scenario had Never been considered, speaking of “speculation”.

Ⓒ AFP/Archives – ISSOUF SANOGO – | Morocco wins gold medal at the 8th Games of La Francophonie, July 30, 2017, in Abidjan

Beaten during the campaigns for the organization of the 1994, 1998, 2006 and 2010 World Cups, Morocco was involved in the corruption cases that hit the world football body. In March 2016, FIFA acknowledged that the kingdom had given bribes to the former president of Concacaf (Confederation of North American, Central American and Caribbean Football) in exchange for His voice for the organization of the 1998 and 2010 World Cups.

For this edition, the country had engaged with South Africa to a hard war of influence with the instances of football, before losing with 10 votes against 14 for the country of Nelson Mandela.

The FIFA, which took note of the declaration of interest of the kingdom of Shereefia, “will decide whether or not to retain one of the candidates” for the organization of the World Cup 2026, June 13 in Moscow the day before Of the opening match of the 2018 World Cup in Russia, she reacted in a statement.

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