FIFA President Sepp Blatter has given a ringing endorsement of the AFC Asian Cup 2015, saying Australia deserves to host a World Cup in the future.The Socceroos are set to play Korea Republic in the decider in front of over 80,000 fans at a sold-out Stadium Australia but regardless of the result Blatter has said he would like to see football's biggest event Down Under in the near future.
"Australia is the only continent never to have hosted the World Cup finals, although the 1981 and 1993 Under-20 World Cups took place there," Blatter wrote in Friday's FIFA Weekly magazine.
"That is basically an unfortunate omission in sporting history because very few countries boast such a rich sporting culture and long list of champions.”
Blatter's assessment would seem at odds with the fact Australia only received one vote with its bid to host the 2022 World Cup that was awarded to Qatar but nonetheless will be welcome Australian football fans and officialdom.
The FIFA President, who will be at tonight's event to crown the new champions of Asia, has recently announced he will run for a fifth term in May's election.
"Sport, with football in a central role, is a defining element in day-to-day life in Australia, not least for women and youths,” continued Blatter.
“The 1956 Olympic Games in Melbourne and the 2000 edition in Sydney set new benchmarks for their eras.
"So we can say with confidence that it would be more than deserved if Australia were to stage the World Cup at some point."
The affirmation from Blatter is no doubt a reflection of the success of Australia's hosting of the 16th edition of Asia's continental Cup, which continues to break records tournament organisers revealed on Friday.
The 2015 event has become the most watched in Asian Cup in history with television viewing, attendances and social media engagement all eclipsing previous records.
The Socceroos are bidding to win their first Asian Cup since transferring to Asia's federation in 2006, while Korea Republic will be aiming to win their first title since they hosted the tournament in 1960 in tonight's final.
Saturday night's AFC Asian Cup final between the Socceroos and Korea Republic will be broadcast LIVE on Fox Sports 505 and LIVE on ABC 1 from 8pm AEDT.