Russia Says 2024 Olympic Bid Off The Table

According to reports Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko reiterated Wednesday that Russia has no plans to bid for the 2024 Summer Olympic Games, saying it needs to focus on preparing for the 2018 FIFA World Cup instead.

St. Petersburg, Russia were considering bidding for 2024 Summer Games (GB Photo)

St. Petersburg, Russia were considering bidding for 2024 Summer Games (GB Photo)

Mutko said, “we held the Winter Games in Sochi and our main task at present is to hold the FIFA World Cup in 2018 and the Universiade in Krasnoyarsk in 2019.  In 2020 St. Petersburg will host games of the UEFA Euro 2020”.

This is the same stance that Mutko maintained at the the conclusion of the Sochi 2014 Olympics last year, however recently the topic re-opened while cities have come forward to bid for 2024 Games and the deadline approaches.

St. Petersburg had considered bids for the 2020 and 2024 Olympic Games but plans have never been finalized.

The declaration aligns with the dialogue coming from the International Olympic Committee (IOC).  On Tuesday IOC Executive Director Christophe Dubi said that five cities have shown “interest” in bidding thus far – Boston, Rome and Hamburg have already made a commitment, while Paris plans to officially announce its campaign in the coming weeks and Budapest will be entering discussions with the IOC at its headquarters Thursday.

Moscow hosted the Summer Olympic Games in 1980 and in 2014 Sochi hosted Russia’s first-ever Winter Olympics.

Moscow bid for the 2012 Summer Games, losing to London.

Russia is preparing to stage a host of high profile sporting events, including the 2015 World Aquatics Championships to be held in Kazan this summer, the 2018 FIFA World Cup and the country’s first ever Winter University Games scheduled for March 2019 in Krasnoyarsk.

The National Olympic Committees have until September 15 to send in their applications for the 2024 Games to the IOC.