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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Jul 20, 2006

England remain set on bid to host 2018 World Cup

England has a 'very good chance' of bidding for the 2018 World Cup and lessons have been learned from the failure to land the 2006 event, according to Sports Minister Richard Caborn.

A feasibility study into the possibility of hosting the event is currently being carried out, and any final bid submission would not be lodged until 2009.

However, Caborn, having sampled the atmosphere in Germany during the World Cup, is certain England has the know-how and facilities to table a more convincing bid than the one that failed ahead of 2006.

Caborn told PA Sport's Football Insider: 'I think the way we're approaching this, I think that we obviously think there would be a very good chance of bidding for the World Cup.

'Obviously as a Sports Minister I'd be disappointed if we didn't because I'd be at the forefront of pushing it, as I was with the Olympics.

'Like we did with the Olympics, we want to be absolutely sure what we are doing is based on robust figures, and our approach is right.

'I think we made many mistakes in (bidding for) 2006 - the way we handled the (Millennium) Dome, the way we handled Wembley and the way we handled Pickett's Lock.

'There were some tough lessons, and if you don't learn from tough lessons then you're a bit of an idiot.

'We've gone around the world and looked at cities who have been successful in bidding for the Olympics and World Cups as well.'

Caborn believes England's strength lies in its stadia, and if a bid is made to bring the competition to England for the first time since 1966, he thinks the 2012 Olympics will provide a solid test of the country's infrastructure.

'In the Olympics themselves, football will be one of the sports to actually go around the country,' he added.

'It will be at Hampden Park (in Glasgow) and in Cardiff and at Aston Villa's stadium and will finish at the great Wembley.

'Wembley will be the greatest stadium in the world, and will be a real credit to the nation.

'You look at places like the Emirates Stadium and football grounds up and down the country and we have some of the best stadia in the world - I have no doubts at all.

'The 2012 Games will be a great showcase. I have no doubts at all that if we really want to make a bid for 2018 then we have the stadia and indeed the organisation that can more than manage.'

Caborn, who was in Hull to promote the possibilities on offer for towns and cities outside of London to benefit from the 2012 Olympics, is now waiting for the feasibility report to land in his lap before the next step can be made.

'There's no doubt it's doable,' he added. 'It would be 2009 for the actual bid itself, but the feasibility report will come out in the next few weeks or months and will tell us what the cost-benefit analysis would be and so on, and we will build on that information.

'We will be looking at what our strengths and weaknesses are and will look to address those issues before we make a formal bid.

'If we're going to do it, we've got to do it right, and it's got to be well thought out.'

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