Sunderland aim to host 2018 World Cup matches if England bid successful
Quinn backed the Football Association's quest to stage the tournament in nine years' time as he formally launched the Black Cats' campaign to be included as part of England's bid to stage the World Cup. The former Republic of Ireland international said: "For a footballer there is no greater sporting honour than competing in a World Cup and I've experienced first-hand the huge excitement a World Cup generates having played in two World Cups for the Republic of Ireland. "Now as chairman of Sunderland I want to bring the greatest football event of all to the city and people of the North-East. That's why we are bidding for the Stadium of Light to become a host venue in the 2018 World Cup. "It would be absolutely fantastic to see the Stadium of Light and the North-East play a big part in such an international sporting phenomenon. "This region has a long and distinguished football heritage that we believe offers something very special to England's bid to host the World Cup in 2018. "Here in Sunderland we have world-class facilities in the Stadium of Light and our training ground, the Academy of Light." As well as the facilities, Quinn is adamant that the region also boasts the people that would enhance the World Cup experience should the showcase event come to England for the first time since 1966. "The warmth and enthusiasm of the people are such assets for us and I ask everyone, young and old, to put their heart and soul into supporting our bid," Quinn added. "I know that football fans from around the world will fall in love with this city and the whole of our region, so let's put football rivalries aside and pull together and show everyone what Sunderland and north-east England are all about." Sunderland is one of 15 cities, along with Newcastle-Gateshead, who are seeking host city status. Quinn is hoping members of the public will back his adopted city's campaign. "We have a lot to offer football fans of the world and we are fully committed to embracing this opportunity," Quinn concluded. "We need the public to get behind the bid. What I need you to do is back the bid and spread the word among friends, family and work colleagues."
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