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December 15, 2009
Bid Committee gathers in New York

NEW YORK---Board members of the USA Bid Committee to bring the FIFA World Cup to the United States in 2018 or 2022 were briefed on the progress of the bid at a meeting at Major League Soccer headquarters on Tuesday.

U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati and USA Bid Committee Executive Director David Downs presided over the meeting to discuss the progress of the campaign and develop plans for the final year leading into the decision by FIFA on the host countries for the two World Cups at stake in December 2010.

“The meeting marks an important milestone for our bid as we now start the second and final stage of our bid campaign,” said Gulati. “We are honored to have the ongoing support of our Board of Directors and thankful so many could take the time to meet with us today and engage in constructive dialogue about our bid. The diversity and talent gathered both in the room and on the phone will energize us as we move into the next stage of the bid process.”

Board members in attendance at the meeting were given a full update from the Bid Committee’s management team. Specifically the board was updated on the final stages of the host city selection and application process. There are currently 27 cities and 32 stadiums under consideration as host venues. In the next weeks, the USA Bid Committee will reduce the list to the maximum of 18 cities that can be included in its formal bid book due to FIFA in May 2010.

Participating in the meeting were, in alphabetical order: Drew Carey, Carlos Cordeiro, Dan Flynn, Ed Foster-Simeon, Mia Hamm, Dr. Henry Kissinger, Robert Kraft, Donna Shalala, John Skipper and Joe Uva. Also attending the meeting was Bob Bradley, head coach of the U.S. Men’s National Soccer team, and representatives of the USA Bid Committee.

The United States, Australia, England, Indonesia, Japan and Russia have formally declared their desire to host the FIFA World Cup in 2018 or 2022. Netherlands-Belgium and Portugal-Spain have each submitted joint bids for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments, while Qatar and South Korea have applied as candidates to play host only to the tournament in 2022.

All candidates must have their bid applications to FIFA by May 14, 2010. FIFA’s 24 member Executive Committee will study the bids, conduct site visits and name the two hosts for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments in December 2010, completing a 21-month bid and review process.

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