We're delighted to announce that Emirates Stadium has been chosen as a host stadium for the Rugby League World Cup 2021.
RLWC2021, which is taking place throughout October and November 2021, is aiming to deliver one of the most inclusive and diverse events ever hosted in England, promoting the three simultaneous rugby league disciplines of the men's, women's and wheelchair Rugby League World Cup.
Emirates Stadium joins 16 other host venues for the men's RLWC2021, when more nations than ever will compete to be crowned world champions.
Four pools of four nations will compete over five weeks in a competition which is expected to deliver the most attended and most viewed Rugby League World Cup in the history of the sport.
Emirates Stadium will host one match – a men's semi-final clash which will take place in late November 2021.
Managing director Vinai Venkatesham said: "Everyone here at Arsenal is really proud to be a host stadium at the Rugby League World Cup 2021. A semi-final match at Emirates Stadium in London between two of the world's strongest Rugby League nations promises to be a huge sporting event.
"We are very much looking forward to hosting Rugby League at Emirates Stadium for the first time since we moved here in 2006. We have world class pitch and stadium facilities and are all excited with the opportunity of staging a match of such magnitude."
Jon Dutton, CEO of RLWC, said: "Emirates Stadium is one of the most impressive sporting venues in the world, and we are excited to be the first sport outside football to be played here. Staging our marquee semi-final in London will be a pivotal moment for the tournament.
"The last two Rugby League World Cup semi-finals that England has contested, including the 2013 game in London, created iconic memories for fans. I am sure that our decision to visit Emirates Stadium will create excitement and interest alongside our decision to host the England Wheelchair group games at the world class Copperbox Arena on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park."
The last Rugby League World Cup was contested in 2017 and hosted by Australia, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea. The 15th contested competition was eventually won by Australia, beating England in the final.
All quarter-finalists from RLWC 2017 have automatically qualified to compete in 2021, with the remaining eight nations being decided by a qualification process based on global regions determined by the Rugby League International Federation. 11 nations have already qualified, with all remaining competing teams being confirmed by November 2019.
The already qualified nations for RLWC2021 are: England, Wales, Australia, Fiji, France, Jamaica, Lebanon, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Samoa and Tonga.
For further information regarding RLWC2021, please visit the following:
Official website - www.rlwc2021.com
Twitter - @RLWC2021
Facebook - www.facebook.com/RLWC2021
Instagram - @RLWC2021
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