Spain: 2030 FIFA World Cup without the Canary Islands?

source:; author: Maciek Ściłba

Spain: 2030 FIFA World Cup without the Canary Islands? It seemed that the most important football event of the globe would certainly take place in Las Palmas. For the moment, it brings matters to a head. Everything will be decided by an election over which the inhabitants of the archipelago have no influence.


The Rubiales case has disadvantaged the Canaries?

The football World Cup in six years' time will be extremely special, as it’s about to take place in six countries on three different continents. In addition to Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay will host the tournament. Of course, the biggest slice of the cake would go to the winners of the 2010 World Cup. The matches would be played in 10-12 Spanish stadiums. For now, those on the final list are Cívitas Metropolitano, Santiago Bernabeu, Spotify Camp Nou, San Mames and La Cartuja. The rest - including the Estadio de Gran Canaria - must wait for a final decision from the Spanish association.

According to reports in the Iberian media, everything will be decided very soon. The new president of the Real Federación Española de Fútbol (RFEF) is to have the deciding vote. Fast-track elections for this position are still to be held in the first half of 2024. They are the result of an affair, the cause of which was the behaviour of the former head of Spanish football Luis Rubiales. As a reminder, during the decoration after the final of the Women's World Cup in August 2023, which fell to La Roja's players, he kissed current Tigres UANL player Jennifer Hermoso on the lips in a fit of uncontrolled emotion.

Estadio de Gran Canaria© Matt Rayns - Groundhopper

The gesture was met with huge disapproval from fans, observers and activists. In addition to the tactless behavior, some also claimed that harassment had taken place. Rubiales on September 10, under public pressure, decided to resign from his positions in the Spanish and world football federations. Eventually, at the end of October, FIFA disqualified him for three years, making him ineligible to hold any position in football's structures.

The interim head of the Spanish federation tried to name the final list of stadiums

Reports from the Iberian peninsula are extremely interesting as they state that the interim president of the RFEF Pedro Rocha was due to make an independent attempt in autumn 2023 to name the Spanish stadiums that will host the 2030 World Cup. However, this move was blocked by the federation's legal advisor. He argued that the statutes proved that Rocha only has the right to pass ordinary resolutions, as well as exercising managerial functions regarding the day-to-day running of the organisation. Thus, he does not have the right to decide on such an important matter as the selection of the event host cities without proper authority.

According to Spanish media, time is currently working in favour of arena projects such as Nueva Romareda, Nou Mestalla and Estadio El Molinón. As long as there is no decision regarding the selection of the final list of stadiums - and according to the tentative timetable, this should already be in the last quarter of 2023 - the designers of these venues have had to make important adjustments to gain an advantage over the rest of the candidates. The backers of the aforementioned venues also used the time to reinforce their support with local authorities. The Estadio de Gran Canaria is still sticking to the same agenda, raising speculation that it could lose this prestigious race.

Estadio de Gran Canaria

© Antonio Morales Méndez | Design of Estadio de Gran Canaria