Neyland Stadium trimmed from World Cup list

NEW YORK — Thirteen more stadiums have been dropped from consideration for the U.S. bid to host soccer’s World Cup in 2018 and 2022, leaving 32 under consideration.

Failing to make the cut Thursday were Legion Field in Birmingham, Ala.; Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati; Ohio Stadium in Columbus; Reynolds Razorback Stadium in Fayetteville, Ark.; Neyland Stadium in Knoxville; the planned Sports City USA venue in Las Vegas; the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome and TCF Bank Stadium in Minneapolis; the Superdome in New Orleans; Heinz Field in Pittsburgh; Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City; the Alamodome in San Antonio; and Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, Ariz.

Nashville remains in the running.

An initial list of 70 stadiums was released in April. Twenty-seven were dropped in June, while Las Vegas and Salt Lake City were added, and the remainder were asked to complete proposals by July 29.

U.S. organizers must submit their bid book to FIFA by May, and FIFA’s executive committee plans to select the 2018 and 2022 hosts in December 2010. FIFA asked that 12-18 stadiums of 40,000 capacity or higher be submitted with each bid.

Remaining stadiums have an average capacity of nearly 74,000, and eight are 80,000 or more — the minimum needed for the opener and the final. Other planned venues, such as a stadium for the San Francisco 49ers in Santa Clara, Calif., could be added.

Australia, England, Indonesia, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands-Belgium, Russia, Spain-Portugal have also bid to host both World Cups, and Qatar and South Korea bid for 2022 only.

England and Spain are seen as the leading contenders to host in 2018, while the United States is viewed as a top candidate for 2022.

Nine venues were used when the U.S. hosted in 1994: Chicago; Dallas; East Rutherford, N.J.; Foxborough, Mass; Orlando, Fla.; Pontiac, Mich.; Stanford, Calif.; Washington, D.C.; and Pasadena, Calif., where the final was held. Since then, the tournament has expanded from 24 to 32 nations.

Next year’s World Cup will be in South Africa, and the 2014 host is Brazil.

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Comments » 18

RPBVolunteer writes:

This is a sad day for the US. You want a big stadium, so you keep Michigan (Where no one knows what soccer is and the play hockey in the summer) and knock off Neyland and Buckeye Stadium.

Volunatic writes:

Well, that's a shame. Knoxville could use the extra tourism revenue.

abnerPeabody writes:

Do the non fans even care? Maybe a lot of money for Knoxville though.

PepperGrinder (Inactive) writes:

Well we knew it was a long shot. Maybe had the renovations been completed we would have stayed in the running longer.

Probably not though.

PennVol writes:

Does the committee supply a reason why you don't make it?

eprahm (Inactive) writes:

As one of the high schoolers at church told me recently, "the best part about playing soccer is not having to watch it". Yawn. I can believe that.


davethevol writes:

It's for the best. We don't need hooligans running around Knoxville starting brawls and ruining businesses.

TheAuthority writes:

Is this at all surprising? They didn't want to invite the world to Knoxville... to watch soccer???

kkempf#226833 writes:

Neyland would have needed more upgrades after the current upgrades in order to qualify as a World Cup venue, but the same applies to almost every college stadium on the list (upgrade from benches to seats, put at least a temporary roof over one stand of the stadium). Likely they looked at Nashville's bid as representative for the state, and as a much more likely stadium for international soccer use, seeing as we've used it for friendlies and qualifiers already. Neyland is fine, but it had competition from local venues that have already hosted soccer matches.

GreerVol22 writes:

probably just a well, we would have to resurrect old "Popcorn" from up in Cocke County to get us enough licker to turn 100,000 football fans into futbol fans.

tallfry writes:

I'd guess the international airport proximity probably comes into play as well.
Lots of the cuts were college venues or smaller towns... Maybe they are just weighing the surrounding city into the equation a little more. In Nashville, the stadium is right downtown, near all of the other tourist attractions and hotels. In Knoxville, you really need a car to get around, outside of the strip.

Joevolsxtra writes:

Putting soccer in Neyland is like putting a turd in the holy grail.

chargervol writes:

in response to hiresanders:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Grow up and mature lil' one. Or, go away. I went back and looked at your previous posts and not one of them were mature. How old are you lil' fella? Again, grow up! GO VOLS!!!

tdforvols writes:

Must have been either the price or politics that killed the deal. Knoxville has already hosted a World's Fair and pretty much has all the required amenities in place.

tino2009 writes:

The problem is not with Neyland Stadium but with Shields-Watkins Field being too small...FIFA's internatinal match size fields have to be 120feet in lenght x 80feet in width plus buffer area for players and coaches...

jcrewvol writes:

darn (not really)

scott_m99 writes:

in response to Joevolsxtra:

Putting soccer in Neyland is like putting a turd in the holy grail.

Now thats funny...I don't care who you are!

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