'Sheffield and South Yorkshire should lead the way on any 2030 World Cup bid' - Mayor Jarvis
Any England bid for the 2030 FIFA World Cup should be focused in the north with Sheffield and South Yorkshire leading the way, mayor Dan Jarvis has said.
The mayor, along with his counterparts in Manchester and Liverpool, have called on the Government to base the majority of the tournament in the north of England in a bid to re-balance the economy and shift the focus from London and the south east.
Mr Jarvis said the tournament could be the ‘catalyst to supercharge the northern economy’ and reset the unbalance with the south.
The SCR mayor also said it would be an ‘amazing’ opportunity to radically overhaul the region’s infrastructure.
Cities which could host matches include Sheffield, Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds, Sunderland and Newcastle, amongst others.
No official bid has been announced but if England does apply, it will face competition from a joint South American bid from Argentina, Paraguay, Chile and Uruguay. Another joint bid of Serbia, Greece, Romania and Bulgaria has also been launched.
Mayor Jarvis said: “Bringing a World Cup to Sheffield would not only give us a short term influx of tourists who would likely spend a significant amount of money to support our regional economy, but also raising the profile of the eyes of the world being on Sheffield and South Yorkshire.
“Bringing people from all over the world to hear our story - Sheffield invented the modern game and that is a huge draw.
“The Olympics in 2012 was a great example of hosting a huge sporting event and the opportunity that was there to invest, upgrade and improve the infrastructure of a particular area.
“There would be potential infrastructure investments that we could gain on the back of being a host city in a global sporting event - Sheffield needs to be at the centre of that going forward.”
Figures show the London 2012 Olympics brought in just under £10 billion to the country, while Manchester’s Commonwealth Games back in 2002 created 20,000 new jobs.
Mayor Jarvis added: “The North has been short changed for a long time now and it is good now to see the Government is realising this.”