World Cup bid backed by William and Harry

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The Independent Football

Princes William and Harry have agreed to woo FIFA executive committee members as part of England's bid for the 2018 World Cup.

The brothers will host a reception for FIFA members during the tournament in Johannesburg after watching England play Algeria in Cape Town.

The reception should provide extra glamour to the bid, which already has David Beckham handing over the candidate file to FIFA president Sepp Blatter in Zurich on Friday.

England 2018 have compiled a 1,752-page document, weighing 8.5kg, which details the vision and technical aspects of the bid, from stadia and training bases to fan parks and security.

Beckham will be accompanied by Triesman and England 2018 chief executive Andy Anson, plus two others yet to be confirmed.

The failure of the general election to decide on a new Prime Minister means there will be no politician in the party but Triesman said he hopes to bring FIFA president Sepp Blatter to meet the new Prime Minister.

Beckham's presence will be much more valuable, he said, adding: "He's perhaps the most iconic footballer in the world.

"He's one of the few people that, if he suddenly appeared in any village in the world, everyone would know who he was.

"It's right that it should be presented by a footballer because the World Cup is a football festival."

Triesman also insisted he was not concerned about recent crowd trouble having an adverse affect on the bid. FA investigations are under way into incidents at Sheffield Wednesday, Luton and Burton Albion.

The 2006 bid was nearly abandoned after hooliganism at Euro 2000 but Triesman has no fears for next month's finals.

He said: "Over the last 15 years, broadly speaking the record of English fans has been as good or better than anyone.

"The record of our fans' behaviour at World Cup tournaments is good, and overwhelmingly for all our qualification games when we have been on the road and when English clubs have been on the road, there has not been trouble."

Each country must present their candidate file to FIFA on Friday, with technical inspections due between July and September, and the final vote by FIFA's executive committee on December 2.

It is expected that 2018 will go to Europe, where Russia plus joint bids by Spain/Portugal and Holland/Belgium are up against England.

The other countries expected to fight it out for 2022 are Australia, USA, Qatar, Korea and Japan.

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