On December 7, the following item appeared on United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson's highly active Twitter account. "This great country is the home of football.
"If we win the election next week, I will put my heart and soul behind the case for a UK and Ireland World Cup in 2030."
Truth has become a shockingly debased coinage in British politics lately.
As indicated in the text, the message was published five days before the UK general election on December 12.
My interpretation of its primary aim is that it was intended to catch the eye of football fans and potential Tory backers on the last Saturday before the big vote.
But there is no reason to doubt that Johnson would be anything other than thrilled to bits if the competition, which is one of sport's two genuine mega-events, did come back to the UK for the first time since 1966.
So, what are the chances of this happening?
Well, the decision is still some way off.
According to FIFA, the selection process is set to be launched in the second quarter of 2022, with the final announcement scheduled to take place at the 2024 FIFA Congress.
What one can say is that, at the moment, the UK looks well-placed to get European football body UEFA's blessing as the continent's candidate.
Unfortunately, while a UK bid would be unlikely to get very far without such backing, this is far from sufficient to give it pole position in the race.
Rivalry between UEFA and FIFA is intense, largely because - with the richest and most powerful clubs based almost exclusively in Europe - both are competing to make money out of the same star players.
The fact that current FIFA President Gianni Infantino used to work at UEFA has not altered this equation.
With more than four years to go before the host is announced, just about anything could happen - except that we can be clear, barring war, plagues and pestilence, the tournament will not be in North America, where the first 48-team FIFA World Cup is scheduled to be played in 2026.
My sense, though, is that even a strong UK bid is quite likely to face two very serious rivals.
The first would be a South American bid based around Argentina - the 1978 World Cup host - and Uruguay.
A relatively small country it may be, but Uruguay hosted - and won - the very first football World Cup in 1930.
There is little doubt that this sentimental card would feature very prominently in any bid for the centenary competition that incorporated the country of Diego Godín and Luis Suárez.
Students of the Olympics will remember that a similar pitch failed for Athens in 1990, when it endeavoured to bring the 1996 Games back to Greece.
The South Americans, though, would have another strong suit: they were quick out of the blocks to support Infantino when he first ran for football's top job in 2016.
The regional confederation, CONMEBOL, offered its blanket support for the Swiss national a month before the decisive vote, when he was far from assured of victory.
While it is the member-associations who will make the ultimate decision, not the FIFA President, football's top man clearly wields influence in the process, and it would be surprising if any South American bid did not gently remind him of their help in building momentum behind his campaign and getting him installed.
The other strong rival I can see emerging is China.
When this subject comes up, one still hears that the world's most populous nation could be ruled out of contention.
This is on the basis that the Asian Confederation is hosting the 2022 World Cup in Qatar and that, in the past, would have ruled Asian bidders out of the two subsequent races.
This is not what the FIFA statutes say, though: section 69.4 states only that: "The right to host the event shall not be awarded to members of the same confederation for two consecutive editions of the FIFA World Cup."
Questioned on the subject in Shanghai in October, Infantino concluded by saying, "The more bidders we have for a World Cup, the happier I am."
So, frankly, if China wants to bid and FIFA wants them to, I cannot see them being ruled out on this sort of technicality.
It is also worth making the point that Chinese companies, especially Wanda, demonstrated support for FIFA in an extremely difficult period just after the Sepp Blatter era had drawn to its chaotic close.
The key imponderables, then, appear to be: Will China want to throw its hat into the ring, and is FIFA likely to encourage them?
One negative factor is the weakness of the present Chinese men's team, ranked a lowly 75th in the world, between Guinea and Bolivia.
When this vast country does eventually host football's most prestigious competition for the first time, there is no doubt that it will expect a strong display from its team.
This plainly could not be guaranteed without enormous improvement from current levels.
These things can change surprisingly quickly, however, as demonstrated earlier this year when Qatar, the 2022 World Cup hosts, won the Asian Cup.
So I cannot see this being a decisive factor in whether or not China pitches for 2030.
Another possibility is that FIFA might say, "Look, we have strong potential bidders already for 2030, so why, China, don't you focus on 2034?"
But this would rather cut against what Infantino said in Shanghai.
In any case, there could be few better ways of demonstrating that FIFA is back from the brink than a real blockbuster bidding contest for its flagship competition - especially when high-octane bidding races for the Olympic and Paralympic Games are seemingly a thing of the past.
Delaying a decision until 2024 also means that both FIFA and China have plenty of time to assess the latter's performance as host of the first beefed-up Club World Cup in 2021.
This might well whet the appetite of officials on both sides, and the general public in China, for the big one.
If China does ultimately decide to run for 2030, such is its influence on the international stage, it will be very difficult for either the UK or a South American bid to beat them, notwithstanding serious issues over human rights, freedom of speech and treatment of minority populations.
Victory will depend on securing backing from other continents, notably Africa, where Chinese infrastructural investment has been prominent and extensive in recent times.
Backing from Asia, the bulk of Africa and Oceania would be almost enough to put them over the line.
Given that Britain now looks likely to be in the throes of negotiating trade deals for its post-European Union future, you might almost argue that a sensible course may be to back out gracefully from the World Cup race, while attempting to leverage trade concessions from the Asian giant in return.
For the time being, though, to parody a much-admired political predecessor of Johnson's, we are not even at the beginning of the beginning of what is shaping to be world sport's next really compelling bidding contest.
A British (or just conceivably an English) bid - which I do expect to materialise - would still have plenty going for it.
And this time around, one Vladimir Putin would not be standing directly in the way.