Birmingham has won the race to become the English candidate for the 2022 Commonwealth Games after defeating rival Liverpool.
The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) have confirmed they have officially recommended Birmingham to Ministers.
insidethegames was told about Birmingham's victory this morning before the confirmation.
In a statement, the DCMS said Birmingham’s bid was considered particularly strong on its management of risk, its high quality existing venue infrastructure and its plans for a long term sporting legacy.
They have stated that the city must now put forward a compelling business case which shows "clear value for taxpayers' money" to receive Government funding towards an official bid.
"I am grateful to the bid teams from both Birmingham and Liverpool for their hard work in making the case for their respective cities as potential Commonwealth Games hosts," said Tracey Crouch, Sports Minister.
"Now, after a comprehensive assessment process, the Government will look at the final bid proposal from Birmingham and decide if a formal bid will be submitted to the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF).
"We need to be completely satisfied that the bid offers overall value for money from hosting the Games and that a strong economic and sporting legacy can be delivered from it.
"The UK has fantastic expertise in hosting the biggest events in sport, as recently showcased at the London 2017 World Para Athletics and IAAF World Championships, and if we are to bid and are selected to host the Commonwealth Games in 2022 I have no doubt that Birmingham would host an excellent sporting spectacle."
The Government will make a final decision in the coming weeks in consultation with Commonwealth Games England.
Should Birmingham pass the final stage of assessment, a formal bid will be submitted to the CGF.
"This is a great endorsement by the UK Government of Birmingham's credentials to host the Games and recognition of the city’s resolve to deliver a memorable event," said Ian Ward, Deputy Leader and chair of Birmingham 2022.
"We appreciate that it was a very close decision and that Liverpool pushed us all the way with a very compelling proposal.
"This is not the end of the journey and we look forward to working with the Government as it makes its final decision to support a UK Candidate City."
Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson acknowledged defeat and congratulated Birmingham.
"I am hugely disappointed not to have won the UK nomination for Commonwealth Games 2022," he said.
"I believed our bid was an excellent bid and one which deserved to win.
"We are extremely proud of the work we put in to building a plan for what would have been an exciting and transformational games and a powerful example of the potential of the Northern Powerhouse.
"It was an opportunity to accelerate growth and develop North Liverpool creating thousands of jobs and new revenue for our City.
"We are not afraid to be ambitious and Liverpool is a city which is proud of our pioneering and innovative history as the front door to the Commonwealth, our caring and welcoming people, and a stunning world famous waterfront, would have been the centrepiece of our transformational Games.
"I want to thank Brian Barwick who I appointed as chair of our board and Denise Barret Baxendale as deputy chair for their devotion, dedication and exemplary leadership.
"Many others contributed and I want to give a special thanks for their energy and commitment including Steve Parry, Beth Tweddle and Tony Bellow who showcased some of the best of our sports strengths on the bid team.
"Finally, I’d like to offer my congratulations to Birmingham and wish them well going forwards."
England is in pole position to become hosts after Canadian city Victoria ended its bid last month because the Provincial Government declined to support it.
Kuala Lumpur had also been tipped to bid but is at the moment still seeking support from the Malaysian Government.
The bid race began earlier this year, following South African city Durban losing the hosting rights due to a lack of financial guarantees.
Birmingham's bid includes extensive renovation work to the existing Alexander Stadium, the home of UK Athletics which has been a host of Diamond League meetings.
It would stage athletics and the Opening and Closing Ceremonies.
Villa Park, one of the most famous football stadiums in England which is home to Championship club Aston Villa, the NEC Arena and a brand-new aquatics facility in Sandwell are other key venues in their concept.
Under their plans, three of the NEC's largest halls would host boxing, judo, table tennis and freestyle wrestling at the Games, while the Genting Arena would host badminton.
The Barclaycard Arena has been earmarked to stage artistic and rhythmic gymnastics competition, while the Symphony Hall would be the venue for weightlifting and powerlifting.
Squash courts and hockey pitches at the University of Birmingham would be used, while rugby sevens would take place at Villa Park and the Ericsson Indoor Arena has been proposed as the netball venue.
Birmingham's Victoria Square has been included as a city centre location as the venue for 3×3 basketball and 3×3 wheelchair basketball.
With a seating bowl with a capacity of 3,000, it is claimed the venue would deliver an intimate and vibrant atmosphere.
Royal Leamington Spa's Victoria Park would be the lawn bowls and Para-lawn bowls venue.
When launching their bid, Birmingham claimed they could host a low cost, low risk and high quality event.
The English city said that 95 per cent of competition venues are already in place should they be awarded the multi-sport event.
It was claimed the event would accelerate the implementation of key aspects of Birmingham's Development Plan 2031.
This would include new jobs and enhanced prospects through innovative ideas for volunteering, increased housing and better sports facilities.
Birmingham 2022 promised a strong cultural programme would run in parallel with the sport, which will promote friendship, competition and understanding.
Rivals Liverpool had pledged to deliver a "transformational plan" if they were awarded the Games, with their bid claiming the Games would accelerate £1 billion (£1.3 billion/€1.1 billion) of investment up to 10 years ahead of schedule and create more than 12,000 jobs.
Their bid focused on the riverside regeneration of the city’s Bramley-Moore Dock, which would be home to Everton Football Club’s new stadium.
Concerns were expressed by Commonwealth Games England over the feasibility of their initial plan to install and remove an athletics track in less than three-and-a-half months.