I recently asked followers on Twitter if they were interested in St. Louis hosting a FIFA World Cup soccer tournament game in either 2018 or 2022. Many of them were — and they indicated their interest on the USA Bid Committee’s website.
Yesterday, the shortlist of US venues was announced. St. Louis made the cut, and is one of 27 cities (of 45 on the original list) still under consideration. If the US is selected as the national host, venues in a dozen or so American cities will host matches. Each venue in the host country will stage several matches over a six-week period. According to the St. Louis Business Journal, the World Cup tournament in Germany in 2006 attracted 3.4 million spectators, averaging about 52,491 fans a match. It also attracted about 2 million tourists — and billions of television viewers.
Complete shortlist of US venues: Atlanta; Baltimore; Boston; Charlotte; Chicago; Cleveland; Dallas; Denver; Detroit; Houston; Indianapolis; Jacksonville; Kansas City; Los Angeles; Miami; Nashville; New York City; Oakland; Orlando, Fla.; Philadelphia; Glendale-Phoenix; San Diego; San Francisco; Seattle; St. Louis; Tampa; and Washington, DC.