SYDNEY - Franz Beckenbauer believes Europe should host the World Cup in 2018 after South Africa and Brazil stage the next two finals. The former World Cup-winning captain and coach with West Germany stopped short of endorsing any individual bids but said England would be capable of hosting the tournament. "It's (the decision) too far away, it's more than one year to go," he told Australia's Sun-Herald: "(But) It will be Europe's turn (in 2018). "As a UEFA member, I would like to see it in Europe but it is an open race as to which country might get it. "England could host it tomorrow because they have the stadiums, the infrastructure, the fans, everything. "But there are a lot of other different countries bidding. Let's wait and see." Beckenbauer is one of 24 members of FIFA's Executive Committee that will decide which countries host the 2018 and 2022 World Cups at a meeting in December next year. FIFA have received nine bids for 2018 and 11 for 2022 although bids from the same continent as the successful host for 2018 would be ineligible for 2022. The 2010 World Cup will be held in South Africa while Brazil will stage the 2014 event. Beckenbauer said a country like Australia could be a strong candidate for 2022 if 2018 went to Europe. "I think they have a good chance because the World Cup's never been to Australia," he said. "Australia's a beautiful country, a beautiful continent."
5 July 2009
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