2018 World Cup Bid Special
X Factor’s Simon Cowell, model Kelly Brook and TV presenter Stephen Fry are some of the celebrities backing England’s bid to host the 2018 World Cup. Fry says: “No other country in the world can match our infatuation for the game and this is the reason I believe England would be an ideal host.”
A proud Sir Bobby Charlton is excited about England winning the bid. The 1966 England World Cup winner says: “I believe it was right to make the bid and reach out for something that would bring pleasure to so many people in this country, even while acknowledging that we might fail, as we did in 2006. I still think we have a good chance of having our faith in ourselves rewarded in the next few hours.”
David Beckham, England’s bid ambassador, delivered a last-minute plea on why England should be hosts. The England midfielder says: “We live and breathe football in England and want to invite the rest of the world to join us for the most colourful and unique festival of football imaginable.”
Beckham believes it is England’s time: “Not to get it would be unbelievably disappointing because everything is set up for it, everything is ready to go.”
Beckham says if England hosts the World Cup in eight years they should be able to win the trophy. The LA Galaxy star says: “We will need a good performance from our players. We have young players who are coming through and will be ready.”
Another Manchester United legend Denis Law is not so bothered about England becoming hosts. The Scot says: “I was on holiday when Euro 96 was played in England and my holidays for 2018 have been booked. I’m not interested in whether England get the World Cup finals.”
Lord Coe believes the England bid team need to be on top of their game for Thursday’s final pitch to Fifa in Zurich. Coe says: “You have to keep your foot hard to the pedal until there is nowhere else to go. Then we need five Oscar performances in the presentation.”
Dutch legend Ruud Gullit says bikes and being small is why Holland and Belgium would be great World Cup hosts. Gullit says: “The compactness of our countries is a great asset. Due to the short distance the next game is never far away and we will offer the fans a network of free public transport and two million free bikes.”
With the USA looking to host the 2022 World Cup, actor Morgan Freeman joined former president Bill Clinton but fluffed his lines when delivering a key speech to Fifa delegates on behalf of the American bid.
Tottenham and Fenerbahce are preparing for a transfer tussle to land Bordeaux’s £7m-rated defender Michael Ciani.
Emmanuel Adebayor is ready to dig his heels in with Manchester City to force a loan move to Tottenham in January, while Aston Villa want Eastlands winger Shaun Wright-Phillips and AC Milan are interested in their striker Roque Santa Cruz.
Manchester City are stepping up their interest in £12m-rated Sporting Lisbon centre-half Daniel Carrico, 22, whom they have watched extensively in the last year.
Newcastle United defender Steven Taylor is being lined up by Chelsea in a £9m bid.
Premier League champions Chelsea are weighing up a £3.5m move for Lokomotiv Moscow goalkeeper Guilherme, who could provide cover for Petr Cech.
West Ham striker Carlton Cole will command a £10m price tag when he goes up for sale in the January transfer window.
Chelsea have sounded out Bolton to register an interest in their star defender Gary Cahill, who is also a target for Liverpool.
Barcelona boss Pep Guardiola is in Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich’s sights after the Catalans’ five-goal demolition of Real Madrid.
Chelsea should see John Terry return from injury for the weekend visit of Everton to Stamford Bridge, though Frank Lampard is targeting the game against Manchester United in two weeks’ time for his comeback.
For full stories, head over to the BBC website.
- England’s World Cup Bid Enters Final Straight (news.sky.com)