World Cup 2030: Morocco steps up to bid for hosting final!

source:; author: Paulina Skóra

World Cup 2030: Morocco steps up to bid for hosting final! Architectural firm Populous has been chosen to design the Grand Stade in Casablanca, which will compete with Santiago Bernabéu and Camp Nou for the organisation of the last match of the World Cup. Where will the final be held in 2030?


Creation of world's largest stadium

The National Agency for Public Facilities (ANEP) has signed a contract for the design and construction of Grand Stade de Casablanca. The largest stadium in the world, where the most important match in the world will take place? Such a signal has certainly been sent. The Populous project, from the North American-British architectural studio specializing in large sports infrastructure, was chosen by ANEP, albeit in collaboration with another French-Moroccan firm, Oualalou + Choi. There were six other candidates, including Spanish architects Cruz y Ortiz.

Construction of the new stadium will begin soon on a 100-hectare plot next to the coastal city of El Mansouria, 38 km north of Casablanca and 58 km south of Rabat, the country's two main cities. It is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2028, almost two years before the World Cup. The winning design is inspired by the traditional Moroccan festival known as mussem. It has its roots in ancient and primal forms. The visualization remains a mystery for now.

 Grand Stade de Casablanca - design from 2011© Groupe 3 Architectes / Populous | Design of Grand Stade de Casablanca by Populous from 2011

Will they host the final?

The stadium, which will accommodate 115,000 spectators, will be the largest in football history, surpassing Camp Nou and even Rungrado-May Day Stadium in Pyongyang. So far, the largest stadium in Morocco has been Stade Mohamed V in Casablanca, home to Raja and Wydad, which can accommodate 67,000 spectators.

Morocco is making this effort, among other reasons, because it wants the final to be held on its territory, and for that, a stadium with at least 80,000 seats is needed. Faouzi Lakjaa, president of the Royal Moroccan Football Federation, already announced in October last year in an interview: We hope to witness an extraordinary final that will honor the entire continent and young generations at the stadium in Casablanca, which will be extraordinary and magnificent, he declared.

Image crisis might take final away from Spain?

Morocco hopes that Spain is in some danger due to the chaos currently plaguing the RFEF. The Rubiales case has appeared in the media some time ago, and others, lowering Spain's position in the race for the final.

Amid the corruption and money laundering turmoil, the Royal Spanish Football Federation cannot impose a new Santiago Bernabéu on FIFA, such opinions can be read in Moroccan media.

Design of Spotify Camp NouDesign of Spotify Camp Nou

Portugal has no intention to compete

The crisis of the RFEF could negatively affect Spain's chances of hosting the final, as it needs to convince FIFA to make a choice favourable to them. Among Spanish stadiums, the greatest hopes of hosting this match are placed on Santiago Bernabéu, although Camp Nou, whose construction will be completed by 2030, also wanted to apply. Morocco is Spain's biggest rival, as Portugal has already ruled out attempting to fight for victory in the title match.

Antonio Laranjo, coordinator of the contest for hosting the 2030 FIFA World Cup, made it clear on March 19 that Portugal does not intend to invest in increasing the capacity of its stadiums, which means that there will be no World Cup final there.

The stadiums that will host the World Cup will only be officially announced in 2026. Each hosting country will present the largest possible number of venues, although Spain is expected to host the largest number of matches.

Estadio Santiago Bernabéu© Madrid1902 | Estadio Santiago Bernabéu