Morocco entered the line of candidacy to host the 2030 World Cup in football, with King Mohammed VI announcing on Tuesday, March 14, 2023, the submission of a joint file with Spain and Portugal, a hundred years after the launch of the most important football competition in the world.
In a message read out by the Minister of National Education, Primary Education and Sports, Chakib Benmoussa, on the occasion of the award of the Excellence Award for the year 2022 from the African Union in the Rwandan capital, Kigali, the Moroccan King said, “I announce before this assembly that the Kingdom of Morocco has decided, together with Spain and Portugal, to present a joint candidacy to organize the World Cup for the year 2030”.
Last month, Argentina, Chile, Uruguay and Paraguay launched their joint official file, in honor of the 100th anniversary of the first World Cup in the Uruguayan capital, Montevideo.
In his message, the king stated that this joint candidacy, which is considered a precedent in the history of football, will bear the title of linking Africa and Europe, between the north and south of the Mediterranean, and between the African continent, the Arab world and the Euro-Mediterranean space.
The Spanish and Portuguese federations did not respond to inquiries from AFP.
Spain and Portugal had announced in 2021 their intention to run to host the World Cup, before Ukraine was included in the joint file in October 2022.
It is expected that the International Football Association (FIFA) will announce the identity of the host in 2024.
Since its inception in 1930, one edition of the World Cup has been held in two countries, in 2002 in South Korea and Japan, knowing that the United States, Mexico and Canada will host the next edition in 2026, which is the first time that 48 teams compete against 32 previously.
And the King of Morocco added that this nomination “will embody the highest meanings of unity around the best of this or that side, and stand as a witness to the concerted efforts of genius, creativity, and the integration of experiences and capabilities.”
Morocco had previously nominated five times to host the World Cup, but its attempts failed in 1994, 1998, 2006, 2010 and 2026, most notably in 1998 when it won 7 votes compared to 12 for France and 2010 when it won 10 votes compared to 14 for South Africa.
In the vote for the next version scheduled for three countries, Morocco received 65 votes from the members of the General Assembly, compared to 134 for the United States, Canada and Mexico.
The African continent hosted the finals once, in 2010 in South Africa, when Spain won its first title.
And the Moroccan national team achieved a great result in the Qatar World Cup 2022, when it became the first African and Arab team to reach the semi-finals, by beating Spain and Portugal before falling in the semi-finals against France.
The likes of goalkeeper Yassine Bounou, full-back Ashraf Hakimi, midfielders Sofiane Amrabat and Hakim Ziyech, and striker Youssef Al-Nusairi starred in his ranks.
It is noteworthy that last September, the official spokesman for the Egyptian Ministry of Youth and Sports, Mohamed Fawzi, announced that his country is studying with Saudi Arabia and Greece to run in a joint file.
And the Saudi Minister of Sports, Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al-Faisal, confirmed to AFP early last month that his country had not submitted a candidacy file, stressing at the same time that “everything is possible.”