Major League Soccer (MLS), along with its owners and marketing company, Soccer United Marketing, has made a US$2 million donation to the USA Bid Committee in the final stages of bidding for the 2022 Fifa World Cup.
The MLS commissioner, Don Garber, announced the deal in Toronto alongside US Soccer president and USA Bid Committee chairman Sunil Gulati and USA Bid Committee executive director David Downs.
"For more than a decade and a half, Major League Soccer has been deeply committed to building soccer in the United States," said Garber. "Our ownership recognises the enormous value to the league, the sport and our country should we win the bid to host the World Cup in 2022."
Major League Soccer has been supporting the USA Bid Committee in various ways since it was formed in early 2009. The USA Bid Committee headquarters is located within the MLS league office in New York City, and Soccer United Marketing has provided sales support, marketing expertise and assistance in a wide variety of areas.
"It is an honour and a pleasure to expand our commitment by providing a US$2 million contribution to the USA Bid Committee," Garber added. "This donation will provide additional resources prior to Fifa's decision on December 2."
"The generous donation of US$2 million is incredible and warmly appreciated, yet it only begins to tell the bigger story of the significant contributions Major League Soccer and Soccer United Marketing have made in our bid to host the Fifa World Cup in 2022," said Gulati. "Not only has Commissioner Garber and other league representatives served dutifully on our board of directors, but their assistance in housing and supporting the USA Bid Committee in the New York league office has made a major difference in our ability to focus 100 percent on promoting the bid nationally and globally. To now make this financial investment in our effort is a tremendous gesture, and one that deserves the gratitude of everyone who shares our goal of returning the Fifa World Cup to the US in 2022."
Fifa's Executive Committee will name the hosts for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments on December 2, 2010, completing a 21-month bid and review process.