Olympics: Obama says decisions on which cities get to host Games 'a little bit cooked'

US President Barack Obama welcomes US Olympic and Paralympics teams at the White House in Washington, on Sept 29, 2016.
US President Barack Obama welcomes US Olympic and Paralympics teams at the White House in Washington, on Sept 29, 2016. PHOTO: REUTERS

WASHINGTON (AFP) - US President Barack Obama has suggested that decisions on who hosts the Olympics are corrupt, in a wide-ranging interview that touched on Chicago's failed 2016 bid.

In an interview published late on Sunday, he recalled his 2009 travel to Copenhagen in a failed effort to get his adopted home city across the finishing line.

"Everybody thought that if I flew out there, we had a good chance of getting it, and it might be worth essentially just taking a one-day trip," Obama told New York magazine.

"Subsequently, I think we've learned that IOC's decisions are similar to Fifa's decisions: a little bit cooked," he said comparing the International Olympic Committee to football's scandalised governing body.

The loss for Chicago was seen as a political blow for Obama.

Rio eventually emerged from a crowded field to win the right to host the quadrennial Games.