If successful, the bid will make history…

The UAE could be one of three host countries for the 2021 FIFA Under 20 World Cup if international reports are to be believed.

It’s believed that Football Associations in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain declared their interest in jointly hosting the 2021 FIFA U20 World Cup. If the joint bid is successful, the Gulf regions will make history as it would be the first time that the competition has ever been hosted by more than one country.

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Rival bids will be submitted by the Brazilian Football Association, the Football Association of Indonesia, the Peruvian Football Association and a joint bid by the Myanmar Football Federation and The Football Association of Thailand.

Whilst it’s not yet set in stone, they’ll have until June 21 to reconfirm their interest, as per FIFA website guidelines. Then, those who declared their interest have until August 30 to submit their definitive bids to host the tournament.

The UAE is no stranger to hosting FIFA tournaments. In 2009 and 2010 Abu Dhabi hosted the Club World Cup and back in 2003, the U20 World Cup was known as the FIFA World Youth Championship, and was hosted by UAE. Saudi Arabia held it in 1989, too.

The move follows the recent announcement from the FIFA Association that the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 will be played with 32 teams. Previously, discussions were in progress to make the Qatar World Cup a tournament of 48 teams. In order to expand the competition, Qatar would need to involve neighbouring countries, which could have included the UAE.

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Image: Getty