Football stadia part of 2015 bid

Editorin Rugby

A successful England bid to host the 2015 Rugby World Cup would utilise football stadia, BBC Sport understands.

Wembley would be used, along with the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, Anfield in Liverpool, Manchester United's Old Trafford and Arsenal's the Emirates.

Full details of the bid will be made public after it is presented to the International Rugby Board on Wednesday.

The Rugby Football Union is targeting ticket sales of over three million - a 30% increase on France 2007.

RFU chief executive Francis Baron confirmed the bid last week, stating it was "time we brought the tournament back to England".

The RFU's five-strong delegation in Dublin on Wednesday will include 2003 World Cup winners Lawrence Dallaglio and Will Greenwood, plus Andy Burnham, the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport.

Other football stadia to be used in pool matches are believed to also include St Mary's stadium in Southampton, Elland Road in Leeds, Coventry City's Ricoh Arena and Newcastle's St James' Park.

It is also proposed Twickenham would host the final, but for the group games Gloucester's Kingsholm and Leicester's Welford Road are the only recognised club rugby stadia set to be used.

Ireland and Scotland recently pulled out of any co-hosting bid with the RFU, while the decision for England to make a solo bid comes after Twickenham's failure to stage the 2007 World Cup, having lost by a landslide margin to France.

England hosted the World Cup in 1991 along with Ireland, Scotland, Wales and France and former England captain Dallaglio is confident his country would provide the perfect stage for the tournament.

Other countries in the running are South Africa - hosts in 1995 - Japan and Italy, with bids to host the tournament having to be submitted by 8 May.

The IRB will vote on the hosts for both the 2015 and 2019 World Cups on 28 July.

New Zealand will stage the 2011 Rugby World Cup.

Source: BBC News

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