England’s World Cup bid team has confirmed the 12 cities that are to form their campaign to host the 2018 finals.
There had been speculation Liverpool could miss out but this has not proved to be the case, with Derby, Leicester and Hull the cities omitted from the list.
A total of 15 stadiums in England were proposed. London potentially has three venues, with Wembley, Emirates Stadium and New White Hart Lane Stadium or the Olympic Stadium among those in the running to host games.
After Fifa votes on the World Cup hosts for 2018 and ’22 in December 2010, world football’s governing body gets the final say on the venues.
Football League and selection panel chairman Lord Mawhinney said: “England’s fortunate to have so many good stadia and I would like to congratulate all of the applicant host cities for the seven months of really hard work they have put in.
“We have chosen cities which present the lowest possible risk to Fifa and it’s Fifa who will make the final decision.
“There will also be a lot of disappointed football fans around the country I understand that – and if I was a fan of theirs I would be just as disappointed.”
“I have no doubt that this process has strengthened our bid considerably.
“There is a temptation to think of bids in terms of just stadia but we have spent a long time talking about travelling, accommodation and security and the decision we have made constitutes a composite of all the criteria that goes towards what makes a good host city.
“The choices we made represented our best judgement of the strongest possible combination to give England’s bid the strongest attraction compared to other countries’ bids for 2010.
“We always made it clear we aspired to having a wider geographical spread.
“We have some world famous stadia and the world would not understand if we didn’t put them in the bid, (but) we felt we should have a sprinkling of tomorrow as well.
“We, as a bid team, are looking forward. We wanted to say to Fifa: ‘We are looking at legacy and legacy is about tomorrow’.
“We heard enough about the new stadiums to put them on the list and we hope that will give local people the confidence to deliver them.”
List in full
Sunderland – Stadium of Light
London – Wembley
Birmingham – Villa Park
Manchester – City of Manchester Stadium
Nottingham – New Nottingham Forest Stadium
London – Emirates Stadium
Leeds – Elland Road
Sheffield – Hillsborough
Newcastle/Gateshead – St James’ Park
Bristol – New Ashton Vale Stadium
London – New White Hart Lane Stadium or Olympic Stadium
Plymouth – Home Park
Manchester – Old Trafford
Liverpool – Anfield or New Anfield
Milton Keynes – Stadium:MK