Sign Up Here to Host the World Cup

By Eric S. Page
|  Monday, Nov 16, 2009  |  Updated 12:01 PM PDT
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SUWON - JUNE 5: John O'Brien of the USA fires in the first goal during the first half of the Portugal v USA, Group D, World Cup Group Stage match played at the Suwon World Cup Stadium, Suwon, South Korea on June 5, 2002. USA won the match 3 - 2. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

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San Diego: The city needs your help to host the World Cup.

The news came out last week that the City Council was consider efforts to bring soccer's World Cup to San Diego. On Monday, Mayor Jerry Sanders made it official with an announcement at the San Diego Hall of Champions.

Hizzoner is asking San Diegans to pitch in to bring the cup to, presumably, Qualcomm Stadium (that's what's on the Web site, anyway) in either 2018 or 2022.

"San Diegans are asked to sign an online petition -- a critical piece of the bidding process," said San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders. "Fifty thousand signatures from San Diegans are needed to do this."

Several nations, including England, Russian and Australia will try to secure the competition.

If the U.S. were to host the World Cup, 18 cities would be chosen to host four to six games over a two-week period. The host city, though, could see an addition of as many as 8,000 jobs and could rake in $350 million to $500 million in tourist revenue, without worldwide visibility televised in 214 countries.

A discussion of the topic will take place at Tuesday's City Council meeting, which kicks off at 2 p.m. The goal will be to determine whether the city would follow an official recommendation to declare that San Diego welcomes the FIFA World Cup and "declares its full support of efforts to continue its pursuit to serve as a Host City for the 2018 or 2022 FIFA World Cup while promoting San Diego and the United States as an attractive host for the international event."

The city is also being urged to accept an offer from the San Diego Sports Commission to pay for "incremental bid pursuit costs" over the next five years.

Eric S. Page reports about all things San Diego, but he draws the line at cat stories. You can follow his updates at twitter.com/espage or send him a story idea.

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