After the recent visit to Russia, the FIFA World Cup Bid Inspectors arrived in England earlier this week.

This was an important visit in establishing the quality of the English bid.

It will not determine the final decision, but it could identify problems which would be taken into consideration on 2nd December 2010 when the final decision is made by the FIFA Executive Committee.

As expected, Harold Mayne-Nicholls, the head of the FIFA Delegation and a highly experienced administrator from Chile, recognised the quality of the bid.

The stadia in England are, without doubt, world class.

Some new stadia will be built but the core ones such as Wembley, Old Trafford, St James’ Park and the Emirates are already there – unlike the Russian bid which will require major investment in new stadia.

The history is also there. The Football Association – not the English Football Association it should be noted – was the first to be founded in world football in 1863. Obviously, the traditional card and the legacy card would be played fully during the inspection.

Make no mistake there is tremendous support for the bid from the government, the clubs, the players and the supporters.

Prime Minister, David Cameron, did not meet the delegation, not because of any opposition to the bid, but I think the FIFA delegation would understand and appreciate that the birth of his new daughter had to take precedence. 

Look at the high profile figures who turned out to support the bid – Sir Alex Ferguson, Sir Bobby Charlton, Fabio Capello, Wayne Rooney and England Captain, Rio Ferdinand – and many more.

There is a high level of support in England for the 2018 bid and the main infrastructure is already in place.

The vote is only England’s to lose.

But it all depends on the 24 members of the FIFA Executive Committee on 2nd December.

Only 13 votes are needed to win the 2018 FIFA World Cup for England!

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