FIFA announced on Wednesday the 16 US cities that will host the 2026 World Cup matches, with 11 places chosen in the United States, three in Mexico and two in Canada.
The 2026 World Cup will be the first tournament hosted by three nations and also the first to be extended to 48 teams in the competition.
– 2026 World Cup: What do you need to know about the 16 venues – Don’t have ESPN? Get instant access
The cities officially selected to host the World Cup matches in the USA are: New York / New Jersey (MetLife Stadium); Los Angeles (SoFi Stadium); Dallas (AT&T Stadium); San Francisco Bay Area (Levi’s Stadium); Miami (Hard Rock Stadium); Atlanta (Mercedes-Benz Stadium); Seattle (Lumen camp); Houston (NRG Stadium); Philadelphia (Lincoln Financial Camp); Kansas City, Missouri (Arrowhead Stadium); and Boston (Gillette Stadium).
The host of the 1994 World Cup final, the Rose Bowl, was not chosen, and another venue in the Los Angeles area, SoFi Stadium, was chosen.
“It was the most competitive process ever for the FIFA World Cup,” FIFA President Gianni Infantino told Fox Sports about the selection process. “We will work in clusters, making sure that teams and fans don’t have to travel too far through different areas: West, Center and East.”
The cities officially selected to host the World Cup matches in Mexico and Canada are: Guadalajara (Akron Stadium), Monterrey (BBVA Bancomer Stadium), Mexico City (Azteca Stadium), Toronto (BMO Field) and Vancouver (BC Place). ).
“It’s a historic day for American football and for the entire American football community, from every corner of our base to the professionals and our national teams,” said the president of North American football. American Cindy Parlow Cone in a statement. “Together with our good friends in Canada and Mexico, we couldn’t be more excited to work with FIFA to host what we believe will be the best World Cup in history.
“I want to congratulate all the cities that will host the matches. I know everyone will do a fantastic job sharing your world-class stadiums, unique communities and culture and amazing fans when the world comes to North America in four years.”
The following candidates were not selected: Baltimore / Washington (M&T Bank Stadium); Orlando, Florida (Camping World Stadium); Cincinnati (Paul Brown Stadium); Nashville, Tennessee (Nissan Stadium); Denver (Empower Field at Mile High); and Edmonton (Commonwealth Stadium).
From the original “United 2026” offer of the three nations, 60 matches are expected to be played in the United States, while Mexico and Canada will get 10 matches each. Once the tournament reaches the quarter-finals, all remaining qualifying rounds will be played in the United States.
Initially started with candidates from 44 cities and 49 stadiums in North America, the process for selecting places began in 2017. Potential candidates were asked to “provide information on each city’s transportation infrastructure, past experience organizing important sporting and cultural events, available accommodations, environmental protection initiatives, potential venues and more “, which also included possible training venues, base camps and other considerations.
In March 2018, a few months before FIFA officially granted United 2026 the right to host the 2026 World Cup, the list of US candidates was reduced to 23. They were not on the list of zones with Chicago and Minneapolis. and Arizona, due to what city officials described as problems with FIFA’s financial demands.
Other prominent cities that were left out of the list of 23 places in 2018 were Charlotte, North Carolina; Detroit; Las Vegas; Salt Lake City and Tampa, Florida. Vancouver, initially out of competition after funding disagreements, eventually replaced Montreal after it left in 2021 when the provincial government withdrew its support.
A FIFA delegation, led by CONCACAF President and FIFA Vice President Victor Montagliani, visited all candidate host cities in late 2021.
The Baltimore-Washington joint bid at M&T Bank Stadium was announced in April after FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland dropped out of the call and opted to merge with Baltimore’s bid. According to the proposal, there would have been a fan festival at the National Mall in Washington.
With the Rose Bowl unselected, none of the United States at the 1994 Men’s World Cup will be used for the 2026 edition of the tournament.
Five of the cities of the 2026 World Cup – Boston, Dallas, Los Angeles, New York / New Jersey and the San Francisco Bay Area – were among nine of the 1994 venues, while others five – Atlanta, Kansas City, Miami and Philadelphia. and Seattle – were on the final list in 1994, but failed to make the cut.
Infantino did not shake hands with FIFA about which city will host the opening match of the 2026 tournament, saying: “There are still some discussions to continue and we will certainly also choose the best cities there for the opening and the final, but Each match will be a final in this World Cup “.
The Aztec Stadium in Mexico City, which hosted the 1970 and 1986 World Cup finals, will be the first stadium to host three Men’s World Cups. Mexico will also be the first nation to host or co-host three men’s world cups.