This is the actual press release when the U.S. Soccer Federation posted its bid to host the 1994 World Cup. The bid was delivered to FIFA in 1987 and the World Cup host was selected in 1988.





ZURICH, September 10 — The United States today furthered its efforts to bring soccer’s World Cup to America in 1994.

The United States Soccer Federation’s application, containing details of 18 potential stadia and all necessary government assurances of cooperation was filed here with the Federation Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), soccer’s world governing body. Paul Stiehl, Treasurer of the U.S. Federation, presented the two volumes of data to Joseph S. Blatter, General Secretary of FIFA, during a meeting at FIFA House.

“This is an especially significant event for the United States and for soccer,” stated U.S. Federation President Werner Fricker. “Our application emphasizes the growth of soccer in this country, the strong interest the public has displayed for hosting the world’s greatest sporting event and the outstanding facilities and management expertise America offers. The grassroots support we have enjoyed from all segments of the population proves that the time is right for the United states to welcome the World Cup.

“FIFA’s requirements are demanding, but the documents we delivered provide comprehensive answers to every area of concern,” said Fricker. “After seven months of intensive work by many people within the Federation and World Cup USA, I feel confident that the application demonstrates United States capability, public support and willingness to stage the best World Cup ever.”

FIFA’s procedures call for the international Federation’s Executive Committee and the general Secretariat staff to examine each applicant nation’s documents and to inspect the proposed game sites over the next nine months. The Executive Committee’s decision on which country will host the 1994 tournament will be announced June 30, 1988. Brazil, Chile and Morocco have previously announced their candidates for the coveted right.

The World Cup is the world’s biggest and most-watched sporting event, bringing together 24 teams for a 52-game tournament, which lasts approximately one month. Games are played in up to 12 different stadia. The most recent World Cup was played in Mexico in 1986, and set records for live attendance as well as playing to an astounding cumulative television audience of 12.8 billion viewers. Nearly 600,000,000 watched the final, won by Argentina.

Among the highlights of the American application are the 18 proposed venue sites from which potential game sites may be chosen, a letter from President Reagan together with specific guarantees from numerous government agencies to ensure the smooth administration of the tournament and demonstrations of enthusiastic support from Congress and the White House.

As a result of an exhaustive stadium survey conducted over several months, the Federation’s bid lists 18 potential World Cup venues, each of which has committed to FIFA that is has reserved the stadium for FIFA’s use in 1994 and that it will provide the stadium in accordance with FIFA requirements. The final choice of stadia will not be made until a host nation is designated, but those listed in the United States document either presently meet or can be altered to meet FIFA’s requirements.

“It is important to keep in mind,” Fricker said, “that between now and 1994 several new facilities may be built which would be available for FIFA’s consideration. Those presented in our application have all expressed their willingness to participate and they understand that the list could change and that the final determination will not occur for perhaps several years.”

The stadia, listed by region and according to size within each region are: John F. Kennedy Stadium and Franklin Field (Philadelphia, Pa.), Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium (Washington, D.C.), Palmer Stadium (Princeton, N.J.), Naval-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium (Annapolis, Md.), The Orange Bowl (Miami, FL), Joe Robbie Stadium (Dade County, FL), Tampa Stadium (Tampa, FL), The Citrus Bowl (Orlando, Fl), Arrowhead Stadium (Kansas City, Mo.), The Cotton Bowl (Dallas, TX), Solider Field (Chicago, Il), Minnesota Sports Complex (under construction, Blaine, MN), The Rose Bowl (Pasadena, CA), Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum (Los Angeles, CA), Husky Stadium (Seattle, WA), Parker Stadium (Corvallis, OR), and Sam Boyd Silver Bowl (Las Vegas, NV).

A significant element of the United States application is the backing supplied by Congress, the White House and various departments and agencies of the Federal Government. A letter from President Ronald Reagan expressing his cooperation, legislation designating the Secretary of Commerce as the liaison to FIFA to expedite World Cup related matters and a copy of the Joint Congressional Resolution passed unanimously in August are all included in the formal presentation.

Support for the World Cup initiative came from all 50 states in the form of more than 200 proclamation and resolutions issues by governors, mayors and states legislatures. In addition, many town councils and other municipalities issues resolutions of backing, and such documents were still being received at time of filing.

The United States will elaborate on its application is December, when a delegation will travel to Zurich to meet with FIFA’s Executive Committee.

Front Row Soccer editor Michael Lewis has covered 13 World Cups (eight men, five women), seven Olympics and 25 MLS Cups. He has written about New York City FC, New York Cosmos, the New York Red Bulls and both U.S. national teams for Newsday and has penned a soccer history column for the Lewis, who has been honored by the Press Club of Long Island and National Soccer Coaches Association of America, is the former editor of He has written seven books about the beautiful game and has published ALIVE AND KICKING The incredible but true story of the Rochester Lancers. It is available at