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President Clinton Hosts USA Bid Board Members in Effort to Bring FIFA World Cup to United States in 2018 or 2022

NEW YORK (May 25, 2010) – President William Jefferson Clinton, honorary chairman of the USA Bid Committee, today hosted members of the USA Bid Committee Board of Directors who span the sectors of public service, sports, education and more in an important summit behind the campaign to bring the FIFA World Cup to the United States in 2018 or 2022.

The meeting took place at the New York City office of the William J. Clinton Foundation in Harlem and included 15 members of the USA Bid Committee’s Board of Directors who are dedicated to the national effort on behalf of the bid.

“To assemble such an impressive array of leaders committed to the ideals of FIFA and the World Cup tells the United States and the global soccer community that our effort is a sincere and worthy one,” said Sunil Gulati, Chairman of the USA Bid Committee and President of U.S. Soccer. “President Clinton is already making a significant impact on behalf of our bid, and we are humbled and impressed by the support our Board of Directors is pledging to help us bring the FIFA World Cup™ back to the United States in 2018 or 2022.”

Joining President Clinton, Gulati and USA Bid Committee Executive Director David Downs at the summit were, in alphabetical order:

• Douglas Band, Counselor to President Clinton
• Carlos Cordeiro, former Goldman Sachs Vice Chairman (Asia)
• Dan Flynn, U.S. Soccer CEO and General Secretary
• Ed Foster-Simeon, U.S. Soccer Foundation President
• Don Garber, Major League Soccer Commissioner
• Mia Hamm, former star player of U.S. Women’s National Team
• Dr. Henry Kissinger, former U.S. Secretary of State
• Spike Lee, Academy Award-nominated director
• Tim Leiweke, AEG President and CEO
• Donna Shalala, University of Miami President
• Joe Uva, Univision CEO
• Casey Wasserman, Wasserman Media Group Chairman and CEO
• Katharine Weymouth, Washington Post CEO and Publisher

The United States and eight competing bids submitted their official bid book to FIFA in a formal ceremony in Zurich, Switzerland on May 14. FIFA’s 24 member Executive Committee will study the bids, conduct site visits and name the hosts for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments on December 2, completing a 21-month bid and review process.

The United States, Australia, England and Russia have formally declared their desire to host the FIFA World Cup™ in 2018 or 2022. Netherlands-Belgium and Portugal-Spain have each submitted joint bids for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments, while Japan, Qatar and South Korea have only applied as candidates to host the tournament in 2022.

The United States men’s national team will begin play in the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa on Saturday, June 12, with a group stage match against England. The U.S. will complete group play in matches vs. Slovenia on Friday, June 18, and vs. Algeria on Wednesday, June 23.