New FIFA president Gianni Infantino has hit the ground running as boss of the governing body.
On his first full working day, he has hinted the bidding process for the 2026 World Cup will start soon. The process was delayed last year due to the corruption scandal that plagued the body.
The 2018 and 2022 tournaments will be staged in Russia and Qatar.
Speaking after an informal match with FIFA employees and guests, Infantino said bidding for the 2026 World Cup hosting should begin before the Mexico City congress in May.
“The 2026 is in 10 years from now. So it is fairly urgent, but there is still a couple of days. Definitely I think we need to launch the bidding process in the next couple of months, probably before the Congress in May.”“Concerning Qatar and Russia, the decisions were taken in 2010 by the executive committee, but since 2010 there has been speculation and allegations and noise.
“It’s now necessary to organise the best World Cup in history in Russia in 2018 and in 2022 in Qatar.”
FIFA has been, in the wake of ongoing investigations, forced to investigate the decision to grant the 2018 World Cup to Russia and the 2022 finals to Qatar and an investigation is also underway by the Swiss attorney general’s office.
Infantino celebrated his first day in office by organising a friendly football match for employees and guests.
Among those who attended the match were former Portugal international Luis Figo, Italy World Cup winner Fabio Cannavaro and former England and Russia manager Fabio Capello of Italy.