Sport

US, Mexico and Canada win race to host 2026 World Cup

US, Mexico and Canada win race to host 2026 World Cup”

The World Cup is to return to North America for a fourth time after Federation Internationale de Football Association members voted to award the right to host the 2026 tournament to a joint bid from the United States, Canada and Mexico.

Wednesday's vote, conducted during the Fifa Congress at Moscow's expo centre, provided a much-needed victory for American football, which is in the process of rebuilding the men's programme in the wake of last fall's failure to qualify for this summer's World Cup in Russian Federation. Canada and Mexico will each host 10 games.

If we're spitballing, it's hard to imagine the United States being forced to qualify for a World Cup in which it's the predominant host.

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.

"What can really be the legacy, whether we host matches or are just involved with this in some other grand scheme, that can make sure that Baltimore and the state of Maryland have maximized the potential of being a part of the World Cup?"

Added Reed: "In our country of Canada we've got three wonderful host cities that have had great success in the past in hosting global sporting events, including the [2015] Women's World Cup, [2014] Women's Under-20 World Cup, [2007] Men's Under-20 World Cup".

All matches from the Quarterfinal on, including the World Cup Final, will be played in the United States.

With the breakdown of voting results made public, the United bid claimed 134 votes, with 64 giving their support to Morocco and one country voting for neither bid.

The decision will be a shot in the arm for football in the United States, after the national team failed to qualify for 2018 in a huge setback for the game there.

The qualification places available is expected to be as follows: Europe 16 teams; Africa 9; Asia 8.5, South America 6, Concacaf 6.5, Oceania 1 and, in normal circumstance, one spot for the host nation.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau set aside a simmering trade dispute with Washington to welcome the news and predict the 2026 World Cup would be a "great tournament". To counter concerns about severe travel, the bid said teams would be placed in regional clusters.

First, North America accelerated its efforts the past four months by sending the three co-chairmen - Cordeiro, Canada's Steven Reed and Mexico's Decio de Maria - on separate lobbying trips around the world.

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". Seventeen American cities remain in the running to host games, while Canada (Edmonton, Montreal, Toronto) and Mexico (Guadalajara, Mexico City, Monterrey) have just three cities each in contention.

Even if Trump were to be elected for a second four-year term in 2020 he would not be in office when the World Cup kicks off in 2026.

Starting in 2026, there will be 16 groups of three teams, with the top two teams in the group advancing into the expanded round-of-32 knockout stages. It will also be the first tournament to be hosted by three countries, Goal reported. Canada qualified once, in 1986.

The Rose Bowl and Camping World Stadium were venues in 1994.

Two notable absences, Chicago and Vancouver, did not agree to Fifa's requirements for hosting games and withdrew from consideration.



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