Richard Caborn maybe embarrassed that a BNP member was allowed to attend the opening of the World Cup bid. A jarring note, potentially undermining a major selling point: England's inclusiveness.
However it is the expenses scandal rocking England that is proving a major embarrassment for the Labour party. It has provided a major fillip for the BNP. Labour's image is so bad, only a few percentage points separate the two parties if a election was held now. The BNP may be excluded from the 2018 bidding table but at this point, their real power lies outside. They can used their increased political relevance to create a backlash against immigrants, stoke tensions, and keep prospective World Cup visitors away.
The scandal also opens up questions as to who benefits from the financial windfall that the World Cup brings? The same MPs shielded by years of government opacity on how taxpayer money was used to finance their lifestyle? A perceived lack of transparency was a factor in sinking SA's bid for the 2006 World Cup, awarded finally to Germany. The same sort of questions are being raised by western skeptics in SA's preparation for the 2010 World Cup.