The World Cup, perhaps the sporting event with the widest world of avid fans, will be played mainly in Spain, Portugal and Morocco in 2030, with several consolation games going to the South American countries whose bid for the event was the runner-up.
Whether you call it football or soccer, it is the world's most widely-played sport, and landing the tournament means a host of publicity and a tourism bonanza for the host countries. Much like the Paris Olympics next summer, it will also trigger a frenzy of building and renovating stadiums and other facilities.
FIFA, the world governing body for the sport, made the announcement Wednesday, although the official award of the event will come next year after technical criteria have been validated.
The Spain-Portugal bid at one point included Ukraine as a partner in a show of support, but it was not part of the final bid. Morocco, a long-time contender, joined its neighbors across the Mediterranean in the final bid. The 2030 event marks the centenary of the World Cup, first played in 1930 in Montevideo, Uruguay.
In addition to the games played in the host countries, one game each will be played in Montevideo, Buenos Aires and Asuncion. FIFA says it is looking for candidate hosts from Asia and Oceania for the 2034 Cup.