Saturday, 23 June, 2018

USA, Canada and Mexico to host 2026 FIFA World Cup

Kristopher Love | 13 June, 2018, 23:17

The United States hosted the tournament in 1994 while Mexico has hosted in 1970 and 1986.

The other chosen USA cities are Arlington, Texas; Atlanta; Baltimore; Cincinnati; Denver; East Rutherford, New Jersey; Foxborough, Massachusetts; Houston; Inglewood or Pasadena, California; Kansas City, Missouri; Landover, Maryland; Miami; Nashville, Tennessee; Orlando, Florida; Philadelphia; Santa Clara, California; and Seattle.

That, along with the promise of major revenues from North American sponsors and television networks, was appealing to Federation Internationale de Football Association, an organization that has been beset by global corruption scandals, concerns over exorbitant costs related to previous tournaments, and allegations of widespread labor and human rights abuses around the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. "A lot of hard work has really paid off by US soccer, [the] Mexican Soccer Federation and the Canadian Soccer Federation to bring it to all three host countries for the very first time in World Cup history". The MetLife Stadium in New York City will host the prestigious World Cup final. Canada has never hosted a men's World Cup, though it was the site of the 2015 Women's World Cup. The intercontinental playoff will be held somewhere in the United States, Canada or Mexico, perhaps in November 2025.

But compared to North America, Morocco's bid existed largely on paper - many stadiums and roads would have had to have been built and critics questioned how it would have coped with an expanded tournament. The 1994 World Cup ― which Brazil won in front of 94,000 fans at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California ― also led to the creation of Major League Soccer, the American professional league that began play in 1996.

Large votes are often swayed by small concessions promised to the right number of smaller nations or by regional biases. Competing against South Korea, Japan, Australia and Qatar, the US seemed like the obvious choice given its existing stadiums and geo-political standing.

The event has since been moved to November to avoid Qatar's blistering summer temperatures, bribery accusations abound, and potential human rights violations at the stadium sites have caused outrage from the global community.

The move is significant for both the United States and Canada, with each team failing to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russian Federation, which gets underway on Thursday. The 3.6 million attendees remain a World Cup record, despite the fact that only 24 nations competed at the time.

Canada and Mexico have already named its three host cities.

"It just made a lot of sense to accommodate and expand a tournament have all three countries host and really kind of spread the football love all around North America", Shanks added.

Despite its fifth failure, Morocco has vowed to continue its campaign to host the World Cup.

Trudeau told reporters in Ottawa: "It's an opportunity to bring the world together and highlight how well things work between Canada, Mexico and the United States".

Canada would benefit the most from getting an automatic bid, considering it has not successfully qualified on its own since 1986.