On Wednesday, Saudi Arabia unveiled its intention to submit a bid to host the 2034 World Cup, marking another milestone in their campaign to establish the nation as a prominent global sports destination.
The bid aims to deliver a top-tier tournament, drawing inspiration from Saudi Arabia’s ongoing societal and economic transformation, as well as its deep-rooted passion for football, as stated by the Saudi Arabian football federation.
This announcement comes one year after neighboring Qatar successfully hosted the first-ever World Cup in the Middle East, where the Saudi national team surprised the world with their victory over eventual champions, Artournament. Following this event, Saudi Arabia made headlines by signing Cristiano Ronaldo to play in the Saudi Pro League, initiating a wave of high-profile athletes lured by lucrative salaries in the world’s leading crude oil-exporting nation.
Sport plays a pivotal role in Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s Vision 2030 reform agenda, which seeks to reshape Saudi Arabia into a hub for tourism and business, while simultaneously diversifying the economy away from fossil fuels.
In the upcoming weeks, the kingdom is scheduled to host the final LIV Golf League tournament of the regular season, a highly anticipated boxing match featuring Anthony Joshua, and the Next Gen ATP Finals tennis tournament. Additionally, Saudi Arabia is gearing up to host the FIFA Club World Cup in December.
This follows earlier news confirming Saudi Arabia as the host of the 2027 Asian Cup in football. Notably, last year, Saudi Arabia secured the hosting rights for the 2029 Asian Winter Games, a comprehensive 47-event competition to be held in Trojena, a region within the futuristic megacity known as NEOM, a part of the colossal $500 billion project.
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