Express & Star

Aston Villa keen to take part in World Cup bid

Villa are planning upgrades at Villa Park to ensure the stadium is part of the UK and Republic of Ireland’s World Cup 2030 bid.

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The club are ready to give their full backing to the prospective bid and are eager to host matches should it be successful.

With a capacity already greater than 40,000, Villa Park is already large enough to meet Fifa requirements and there are currently no plans for expansion.

Instead the work will focus on improving existing facilities to ensure they comply with tournament guidelines.

The 125-year-old ground hosted three matches at the 1966 World Cup and a further four at Euro 96. In total, it has staged 16 internationals and was the first stadium to host internationals across three different centuries.

The FAs of England, Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Ireland are carrying out a feasibility study before the formal World Cup bidding process begins in 2022.