The official handover of the bidding documents for the 2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cups™ took place at the Home of FIFA in Zurich today.

Australia, England, Netherlands/Belgium, Japan, Korea Republic, Qatar, Russia, Spain/Portugal and USA all presented for the penultimate stage of the bidding process, which began in January 2009. A final decision on the host nation/s for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments will be made by the FIFA executive in December.

England, Spain and the USA staged the FIFA World Cup in 1966, 1982 and 1994 respectively, while Korea Republic and Japan co-hosted the world’s biggest sporting event in 2002. The other nations in the running have never had the competition on their own soil.

England midfielder David Beckham, Dutch legend Ruud Gullit, Football Federation Australia chairman Frank Lowy, Japan Football Association President Motoaki Inukai, Korean Football Association chairman Sung-Joo Han, chairman of Qatar's bid His Excellency Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad Al Thani, Russia's Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov and Spanish Football Federation President Angel Maria Villar Llona all helped present their countries’ bidding documents.

FIFA can confirm the dates of the inspection visits that will be conducted by a FIFA delegation to each of the national associations bidding for the 2018 and/or 2022 FIFA World Cups™. The calendar of the visits has been established by FIFA based on logistical aspects, including time zones, holiday seasons in each country, dates of Ramadan and other aspects such as the typhoon seasons in Asia.

The dates are as follows:
19-22 July: Japan
22-25 July: Korea Republic
26-29 July: Australia
9-12 August: Belgium and the Netherlands
16-19 August: Russia
23-26 August: England
30 August-2 September: Spain and Portugal
6-9 September: USA
13-17 September: Qatar