It looks more and more like the playing field will be cleared so only European countries will be bidding for the 2008 World Cup.
FIFA officials won't comment directly, but they have told the United States, Australia and Japan to drop out of the race for the 2018 World Cup and focus on 2022. Such a move would leave England, Russia, Spain-Portugal and Netherlands-Belgium as the four bidders.
“They need to make up their mind in terms of what they are bidding for,” FIFA General Secretary Jerome Valcke said on Feb. 18.
“If, in the end, only European associations bid for 2018, then that’s their decision.” USA Bid Committee executive director David Downs said in a statement that he isn’t aware of “official” talks about focusing on 2022. “We are still going for 2018 and 2022,” he said.