Thursday promises to be a decisive day for English football, as the entire sporting nation waits to discover whether the inventors of the Beautiful Game will emerge victorious in their bid to host the most widely viewed sporting event in the world.
We can only hope. For as it stands right now, Iberia 2018 is favourite to win the World Cup race. Whether its pole position has been gained through ethical means is questionable, but such a topic will discussed by more qualified and informed journalists than myself.
So, for the time being, let's forget FIFA cynically maximising advertising and sponsorship revenue by announcing the 2018 and 2022 winners jointly, a move that has resulted in (legitimate) accusations of collusion and corruption. Also, put to one side a certain ill-timed BBC Panorama broadcast that is in anything but the public interest.
Instead of politics, we should focus on the football. And ahead of this crucial week, it was fitting that the most compelling advert for our country hosting the World Cup was demonstrated through the action on the pitch and in the stands.
Indeed, the latest round of Premier League fixtures treated fans to an impressive 41 goals. Furthermore, regardless of their team's result, each dedicated supporter who braved the sub-zero temperatures had something to celebrate, with every team in the division getting on the score sheet.
Remarkably, it’s the first time since the league’s inception 18 years ago that this has happened. Never mind El Clasico, if FIFA delegates are interested in exciting and enthralling action, they need look no further than the English top flight.
Undoubtedly, there will be more dramatic twists and turns prior to Thursday's announcement in Zurich, but hopefully, I’ll be writing next week celebrating England’s winning bid and affectionately looking-ahead to the competition in eight years time.
However, should we miss out, it’s comforting to know that, as ever, there will be another excellent weekend of domestic football to ponder and discuss. Of that you can guarantee.
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