Amid growing bribery allegations against FIFA, it is looking more and more like there will be a re-vote to decide the host nation for the 2022 World Cup.
Under current FIFA regulations, the 2014 World Cup in Brazil and the 2018 World Cup in Russia make nations belonging to the UEFA (Europe) and CONMEBOL (South America) confederations ineligible to host in 2022, and South Africa just represented the AFC (Africa) Confederation in 2010.
That means the 2022 host will almost certainly be a nation belonging to either CONCACAF (North America, Central America, Caribbean) or AFC (Asia) confederations.
Here are the favourites to replace Qatar if there is a re-vote, with betting odds according to English bookmaker Coral.
1. United States — 1/1
The United States lost to Qatar 14-8 in the final vote for the 2022 World Cup and have already been listed as the even-money betting favourite to be awarded the tournament if there is a re-vote.
However, the United States is far from a lock. When the 2018 and 2022 World Cups were awarded to Russia and Qatar, FIFA made it clear they wanted the World Cup hosted in areas that had not hosted previously which would allow the sport to grow internationally.
2. South Korea — 9/4
South Korea finished third in the 2022 World Cup host nation voting. However, they actually had more votes than the United States in the first round of voting and were just narrowly eliminated in the next-to-last round of voting when the United States received six votes and South Korea received five votes.
But if FIFA wants to spread the host nations around, South Korea has hosted even more recently than the United States, when they co-hosted with Japan in 2002.
3. Japan — 9/4
Japan has the same problem as South Korea, having recently co-hosted the tournament. They have the added issue of having received even less support in the original voting than South Korea. They were eliminated in the second round of voting with just two votes.
4. Australia — 8/1
Of this group, Australia would seem to best fit the criteria of expanding the tournament into uncharted waters. However, it is unclear if Australia will even resubmit a bid to host.
Australia is monitoring the bribery investigation and is “ready to reapply” according to TheAustralian.com.
However, there was public criticism when Australia’s original bid cost taxpayers $US40 million and received just a single vote from the 22 voters.
5. Qatar — no odds listed
Even if the bribery allegations turn out to be true, the original voting suggests there was some support for Qatar from voters who were not bribed.
Qatar received just ten of the 22 votes in the second round of voting. That number grew to 14 in the final round of voting.
However, even beyond the bribery allegations, FIFA president Sepp Blatter called giving the 2022 World Cup to Qatar “a mistake,” in reference to the whether that will likely force the tournament to be moved to the winter.
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