Blatter backs Japanese bid for 2019 Women's World Cup
Thursday, 13 September 2012
September 13 - FIFA President Sepp Blatter has confirmed his support for a Japanese bid to host the Women's World Cup in 2019.
Blatter (pictured top, left, with Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda) said he would back a bid for the 2019 event when he visited Japan at the end of last year, saying it would help the country continue its recovery from a devastating earthquake and tsunami, which hit the country in March 2011.
Japan is hosting Asia's first Rugby World Cup in 2019, and Tokyo could stage the Olympic and Paralympic Games the following year if it wins the bid race against Istanbul and Madrid.
The country co-hosted the men's World Cup in 2002 with South Korea, and as the reigning women's world champions it would appear a strong candidate on paper.
Japan also regularly hosts the annual FIFA Club World Cup tournament.
Blatter was in Japan visiting the Women's Under-20 World Cup; a tournament further underlining the nation's hosting credentials.
"Japan would be a good candidate or contender," Blatter said.
"They are a little bit afraid because they have the Rugby World Cup in the same year but the sports are totally different.
"You have to play somewhere where women's football is established; otherwise it will not be a big success."
The Rugby World Cup runs from September 6 to October 20, but Blatter believes that Japan could stage the tournament prior to that.
Canada is hosting the next FIFA Women's World Cup in 2015.
September 2012: FIFA Under-20 Women's World Cup showcases Tokyo 2020 bid
December 2011: Staging Women's World Cup would help Japan recover from disaster claims Blatter