On Wednesday (Oct. 9), it was announced at the fifth Asean Ministerial Meeting on Sports in Manila that Thailand will lead a joint bid with Singapore, Indonesia, Vietnam and Malaysia to host the 2034 Fifa World Cup.
They also welcomed other members of Asean to take part in the working group.
Thailand's Tourism and Sports Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn said that the proposed five-nation bid was approved during Wednesday's meeting, reported Bangkok Post.
Phiphat also confirmed that the participants agreed to let Thailand lead the bid.
"Following the Chairman’s Statement of the 34th ASEAN Summit on ASEAN’s Joint Bid for the FIFA World Cup 2034 and in the spirit of ASEAN as One Community, we agree to establish a Technical Working Group led by Thailand with four ASEAN countries, namely: Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, and Viet Nam as core members and welcome other members to also take part in the working group."
They also supported the Indonesia's bid to host the FIFA U-20 World Cup in 2021.
He added that he would bring the matter to the Thai cabinet for approval.
Today reported that other countries which have shown interest in hosting the 2034 World Cup include China, Egypt, Zimbabwe, Nigeria and joint bidders Australia and New Zealand.
Singapore to qualify for 2034 World Cup?
It has been 21 years since the then Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong announced the Goal 2010, which was a target for the Singapore national football team to qualify for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
Unfortunately, the Lions failed to achieve the goal and Singapore's football continued to struggle over the years.
The Lions were ranked 81st in the FIFA rankings in 1998 when Goh first talked about Goal 2010.
The national team is now ranked 162nd in the world and 34th among the Asian Football Confederation teams.
However, the goal has recently been updated by the Football Association of Singapore (FAS) vice-president Edwin Tong. With a 2034 goal this time.
He added that it would be a “realistic” goal for Singapore to achieve in 15 years' time.
On Aug. 22, The Straits Times reported that Goh also supported Tong's goal.
Goh said at the Chiam See Tong Sports Fund gala dinner:
"My colleague Edwin Tong is foolish enough to set a goal for Singapore to qualify for the World Cup 2034. But that's the spirit, you must have something in mind and even if you don't qualify, the standard will be raised."
He added that although Goal 2010 was a failure, Singapore must "always dare to try" and not give up on chasing dreams.
Top photos via FAS' Instagram page.