Warner would back Canuck bid

ROB BRODIE -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:57 AM ET

Canada's quest to land the 2011 Women's World Cup has the unwavering support of one of world soccer's biggest power brokers.

FIFA vice-president Jack Warner, who has been overwhelmed by Canadians' support of the U-20 World Cup, reaffirmed yesterday that he is in this country's corner in the bidding for the 2011 tourney.

France and Canada are considered the front-runners to win the host's role for the event. Canadian Soccer Association president Colin Linford said he expects a decision before year's end, likely by November.

Warner said Canada long ago proved it could support a FIFA women's event when the 2002 U-19 World Cup final was played before a near-capacity crowd at 59,000-seat Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton.

"Canada will have my full support for the 2011 competition," said Warner, also the president of CONCACAF, which includes Canada.

He also pointed to massive ticket sales for the U-20 World Cup in a country that has little in the way of soccer pedigree. Yet, Canada has done what many countries "thought was impossible, almost unthinkable," Warner said, with sales having surpassed one million tickets.

Warner believes it's very possible the U-20 record of 1.155 million -- set in Mexico in 1983 -- could fall before Canada 2007 is over.

"If I didn't put my weight behind Canada (in the 2011 bidding) now, I would be failing them," Warner said before last night's games at Frank Clair Stadium.


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