Reaction to England's World Cup defeat

David Beckham was gracious in defeat as the blow of losing the vote to host the 2018 World Cup to Russia sank in.

England received only two votes and were eliminated in the first round, with Russia then beating joint bids from Spain and Portugal and Holland and Belgium to triumph, while Qatar were awarded the 2022 tournament.

England brought in the big guns to lobby FIFA delegates in Zurich, with former captain Beckham, Prime Minister David Cameron and Prince William all spending two days promoting the bid, but it was all in vain.

Beckham told BBC Radio Five Live: "I think the bid team have done everything possible, we couldn't have got a better bid.

"We're disappointed but we wish Qatar and Russia the very best, they're two great countries and I'm sure they'll make FIFA very proud.

"It's obviously hard to not come away with the World Cup in 2018 but a lot of congratulations have to go to the team, a lot of hard work has been done.

"With the Prime Minister's hard work and Prince William's hard work, the whole bid team has been exceptional.

"It would be great to bring the World Cup to our country because we've not had it for so many years but it's a process I've enjoyed."

The Prime Minister arrived back in England to bad news after leaving Switzerland before the decision was announced.

He said: "It is desperately sad. There hasn't been a World Cup in England in my lifetime. I was hoping we could change that, but not this time.

"According to FIFA we had the best technical bid. No-one could identify any risks of coming to England.

"I think we had the strongest commercial bid and the country is passionate about football. But it turns out that's not enough."

Prince William expressed his disappointment, saying on Sky Sports News: "We had a very strong bid, sadly it didn't work out. The guys have been doing a fantastic job, we ran a really professional campaign, and I'm immensely proud of them.

"I'm sorry for the fans back home, we did everything we could."

Bid chief executive Andy Anson told the BBC that England had expected to get more than the two votes they picked up.

"There were other votes we thought we were going to get that would have taken us way into the second round and beyond," he said. "Some of those didn't materialise, I don't know which ones.

"It would be nice to know because, when people look you in the eye and promise you something, you tend to hope they live up to their word, but clearly that's not happened."

Current England captain Rio Ferdinand, giving his reaction on Twitter, drew attention to the BBC's Panorama programme on Monday, which probed alleged corruption within FIFA.

He said: "The timing of the Panorama programme was bad taste, fact."

Gary Lineker, whose tally of 48 international goals is the second-highest in England's history, added: "They've always said they want to push the frontiers - I was surprised they went with two new ones but there were a lot of good strong bids.

"It was always going to be hugely competitive, I just wish it was us."

London Mayor Boris Johnson was disappointed the city did not have more to celebrate after winning the bid to host the 2012 Olympics.

"This is a tremendously disappointing result," said Johnson. "We put together a cracking bid, our technical specification was top notch and our stadiums would have been packed to the rafters. Londoners love football."

England bid board member Lord Sebastien Coe admitted Russia's presentation this morning had been shrewd and may have helped seal their success.

The Russians pointed out the World Cup had yet to be staged in eastern Europe, compared with the 10 times it has been held in the west of the continent.

"It was a very similar concept that Rio went for in Copenhagen (when they won their bid for the 2016 Olympic Games) just a few months ago," Lord Coe told BBC Radio Five. "I think that worked quite strongly for them today."

Former Arsenal vice-chairman David Dein was also integral to England's bid team, and was angered that "the best team didn't win".

"It was always going to be difficult and it wasn't made any easier by certain elements. I'm not going to go into that now," he said.

"When the technical study and the economic reports came out, we were one of best - if not the best - and I think you'll agree that the presentation today was top class, so that makes it all the more disappointing that we didn't do better."

Sunderland chairman Niall Quinn felt England were a victim of politics and admitted the decision was a big blow for a city that would have been one of the hosts.

He told Sky Sports News: "It's a depressed room, lots of people have left the room in tears. A lot of people gave virtually their whole lives to this over the last 18 months. The collective will in this region was incredible.

"We won't get bitter and twisted but, having put so much work in, having been highly commended for our national bid, having scored as highly as we did technically, I think there were other forces at play.

"I'm not sure what they are yet, the politics of it all seems to have strangled the English bid."

Martin Peters, who was part of the England team that won the World Cup on home soil in 1966, said on Sky Sports News: "I'm absolutely gutted.

"I'm sure the boys of 66 would have loved to have it back here and there'll all be really upset."

Voices
Homeless Veterans charity auction: Cook with Angela Hartnett and Neil Borthwick at Merchants Tavern
charity appealTime is running out to secure your favourite lot as our auction closes at 2pm tomorrow
Arts and Entertainment
J Jefferson Farjeon at home in 1953
booksBooksellers say readers are turning away from modern thrillers and back to golden age of crime writing
Sport
Amir Khan is engaged in a broader battle than attempting to win a fight with Floyd Mayweather
boxing Exclusive: Amir Khan reveals plans to travel to Pakistan
News
Stacey Dooley was the only woman to be nominated in last month’s Grierson awards
mediaClare Balding and Davina McCall among those overlooked for Grierson awards
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Voices
Joseph Kynaston Reeves arguing with Russell Brand outside the RBS’s London offices on Friday
voicesDJ Taylor: The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a worker's rant to Russell Brand
News
Twitchers see things differently, depending on their gender
scienceNew study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Caroline Flack became the tenth winner of Strictly Come Dancing
tvReview: 'Absolutely phenomenal' Xtra Factor presenter wins Strictly Come Dancing final
Life and Style
A still from the 1939 film version of Margaret Mitchell's 'Gone with the Wind'
life
News
Xander van der Burgt, at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
scienceA Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
Arts and Entertainment
British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
film
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'
Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

Marian Keyes

The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef creates an Italian-inspired fish feast for Christmas Eve

Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

Bill's Italian friends introduced him to the Roman Catholic custom of a lavish fish supper on Christmas Eve. Here, he gives the tradition his own spin…
Liverpool vs Arsenal: Brendan Rodgers is fighting for his reputation

Rodgers fights for his reputation

Liverpool manager tries to stay on his feet despite waves of criticism
Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick