World Cup 2026: It has been official that the United States, Canada and Mexico will jointly launch the formal bid to host the 2026 World Cup. It was speculated for few weeks now, and it is now officially announced at a news conference held in New York City earlier today. The bib will be made by these three countries and FIFA will decide on who will host the 2026 edition of the World Cup in 2020.
If all the three countries were selected by FIFA, then it will be the first time that the tournament is hosted by three countries. It was in 2002, Japan and South Korea hosted the sporty event. There has been no joint host of the tournament since then. Also, the 2026 World Cup will be the first event to have 48 teams playing in the tournament, after FIFA approved 16 teams to add to the tournament. The expansion will effect after the 2018 and 2022 editions of World Cup in Russia and Qatar, respectively.
The US, Mexico and Canada to Host 2026 World Cup
If FIFA approves the three countries proposal, the tournament will be jointly hosted by the United States, Canada with the US covering the 75 percent of them. As per the proposal, the US will host 60 games and Canada and Mexico will host 10 matches each. The United States will host all the matches following the quarter finals.
Sunil Gulati, president of the US Soccer Federation, said that President Donald Trump is fully “supportive” of the joint bid and had “encouraged” it. Trump is very keen to build a border wall between the US and Mexico, however, that hasn’t have any impact on it.
“The United States, Mexico and Canada have individually demonstrated their exceptional abilities to host world-class events. When our nations come together as one – as we will for 2026 – there is no question the United States, Mexico and Canada will deliver an experience that will celebrate the game and serve players, supporters and partners alike,” added Gulati.
Having said, the Europe and Asia cannot bid for the 2026 World Cup due to FIFA’s rotational policy because the fact Europe and Asia will host the tournament in 2018 and 2022 respectively. The US had once hosted the event in 1994 which saw a massive attendance in the World Cup’s history, while Mexico had hosted the event twice in 1970 and 1986 and Canada among the three countries that had never hosted the event. However, the 2015 Women’s World Cup was hosted in Canada.
The New FIFA Bidding Process
As per the new system, FIFA will no longer decide the country to host the World Cup. Instead, the host country will be chosen on voting by the 209 member nations of FIFA. The 2026 World Cup is the first tournament to be chosen under the new system which came into effect after corruption allegations in awarding the 2018 and 2022 World Cups to Russia and Qatar.