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Hosting World Cup could give £3.2bn to UK

THE economy would be £3.2bn better off if England hosts the 2018 football World Cup, according to a study by PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Business leaders including Sir Alan Sugar cited the findings yesterday as they backed the bid.

Sugar from BBC1’s The Apprentice and British Airways chief Willie Walsh said winning the bid to hold the tournament was the “ultimate honour in sport” and would have “huge benefits nationwide”.

“It will create revenue and jobs. It will open up opportunities for young people to learn about teamwork, competitiveness with integrity and other skills needed in business,” the group said.

Other business leaders backing the bid include WPP advertising chief Sir Martin Sorrell, and the bosses of Jaguar and Eurostar. England is likely to be pitched against Russia and joint bids from Spain/Portugal and Holland/Belgium in the battle to host the 2018 tournament. Fifa will choose the winner.