U-20 WORLD CUP
Argentina, Peru and Qatar, possible alternatives to host the U-20 World Cup
After it became official that Indonesia will not host the U-20 World Cup, several federations are applying to host the competition.
On Wednesday, FIFA confirmed that they have removed Indonesia as the host of the upcoming U-20 World Cup, which is scheduled to begin in under two months’ time.
The global governing body confirmed that following a meeting between FIFA President Gianni Infantino and President of the Football Association of Indonesia (PSSI) Erick Thohir, FIFA has decided, due to the current circumstances, to remove Indonesia as the host of the U-20 World Cup 2023.
The United States are one of 24 nations preparing to take part in the tournament, which is due to run from 20 May until 11 June 2023. World soccer’s governing body now faces a late scramble to reorganise the event at short notice, although they have no plans to move things back to a later date.
The polemic has been caused by Israel’s qualification for the U-20 World Cup for the first time in the country’s history. Indonesia has no formal diplomatic relations with Israel and, as the world’s most populated Muslim-majority nation, has been a very public supporter of Palestine in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Wayan Koster, the governor of Bali, one of Indonesia’s most well-known provinces, also addressed a letter to the Indonesian FA and the Ministry of Youth and Sports in which he requested them to forbid the Israeli team from competing in Bali, where the draw was due to take place.
New host nation for U-20 WC
FIFA are now scrambling to seek a new host nation with three countries (Argentina, Peru and Qatar) having already expressing interest in taking over from the Asian nation.
Argentina and Peru are the two South American possibilities with CNN Indonesia reportedly revealed FIFA’s idea of holding the tournament in the Andean country a few days ago. “FIFA decided that Peru will be the host’s replacement”, declared Yesayas Oktavianus, former administrator of the PSSI (Indonesian Federation). The Peruvian Football Federation (FPF) will be in charge of hosting the U-17 World Cup next November, so the infrastructure would already be in place.
Qatar have also emerged as another Asian option having hosted the 2022 World Cup just three months ago, so infrastructure and basic logistics would not be a problem. However, the high temperatures in the Gulf nation during May and June could be a hindrance.