Racism track record could help 2018 bid says Triesman

Lord Triesman is hoping England's history of tackling racism in football will play a part in the 2018 World Cup bid.

Rivals such as Spain have had problems with players suffering racial abuse but Triesman highlighted the intolerance of racism in England when he announced foreign ambassadors for the bid.

Nwankwo Kanu, Kolo Toure, Roque Santa Cruz, Salomon Kalou, Kenwyne Jones, Ossie Ardiles, Gianfranco Zola and Lucas Radebe are among those backing England's attempt.

Triesman, speaking at the Leaders In Football summit at Stamford Bridge, said: "They are able to point out, because we faced our demons in the past, that you can play your football here without racial abuse. And that is not true everywhere. You can also do it knowing that when we see any signs of a re-emergence we'll stamp on it."

Triesman was responding to Jack Warner's criticism of England's bid.

Triesman, the chairman of the bid, has had his own leadership questioned but insists he has not considered his own position.

He said: "I have not had anybody say to me in any private, let alone public, meeting that they believe I am creating a negative trend in the bid. I'll have that discussion if someone wants to."

With reports of political in-fighting behind the scenes of the bid, Triesman added: "I think it is tremendously important that those who attend the board of a bid behave in a way which is supportive of the bid. Broadly speaking that is happening.

"There seem to be days when people seem to feel that they need to come in and tell you what they don't like about it.

"It would be senseless to say there is not a day when someone hasn't got an adverse comment."

Meanwhile, Triesman has highlighted the impact of Setanta's collapse as a reason behind a lack of progress in the National Football Centre at Burton.

The project to build a headquarters for football development has been mothballed and appears unlikely to be resurrected while the FA are looking for a broadcaster to replace Setanta, who screened the FA Cup matches and England's away qualifiers.

"I'm very eager to see Burton happen," Triesman said.

"Everyone knows that Setanta has made a significant difference to the money available to the FA.

"If I told you Setanta going bankrupt had minimal influence on what we can do and afford on capital projects, nobody would believe me for a second.

"It has had a very big impact and we are working hard to get alternative broadcast partners in particular for the FA Cup which is a key property.

"We need the whole flow of the income to see our programmes through. We're going to try to get back to that point."