England move one step closer to official bid for 2030 World Cup

It would nearly certainly have the backing of Europe, pending other bids from the continent, with Uefa's president, Aleksander Ceferin, praising the FA chairman, Greg Clarke, for overhauling the "arrogant" image of English football.

The Government has also suggested it would support any bid.

Argentina, Uruguay, and perhaps Chile are all considering a joint-bid for the 2030 World Cup for the centenary of the tournament to return to where it began (in Uruguay), but if voters overlook that, England could have a good chance.

The FA told Sky News its board had "agreed to conduct feasibility work into a potential bid".

England won the only World Cup it has ever hosted in 1966 but lost with bids for the 2006 and 2018 competitions.

The 2030 World Cup will see 48 teams play in an 80-game tournament.

It is understood that the study will also look at any positive and negative benefits from bidding jointly with some or all of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

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That most recent defeat was an embarrassing and expensive affair, with England going out in the first round of voting, but the FA has made little secret of its interest in trying again, particularly as it now has more faith in FIFA's selection process.

The FA has distanced itself from suggestions it should host the 2022 World Cup in the unlikely event that Qatar loses the right to host the tournament.

Qatar's hosting of the World Cup has been controversial due to the initial plan to hold the tournament in the Arab state's summer months, although the schedule has since been changed by Federation Internationale de Football Association.

It follows a Sunday Times report that Qatar's bid engaged in a "dirty tricks" campaign to discredit its rivals in the build-up to the vote to decide where the 2018 and 2022 World Cups would be held, an allegation 2022 host Qatar has denied.

"Russia did a brilliant job hosting the 2018 World Cup and we support the rotation of World Cup hosting among the confederations". That would make the 2030 World Cup the next one a European nation might be able to host, and not before.

England is already a joint host of Euro 2020 with seven games being held at Wembley.

Football has moved a step closer to coming home as the FA have confirmed that England have made the first moves towards making a bid for the 2030 World Cup.

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