US, Mexico, Canada embark on World Cup history with winning bid

Ruben Hill
June 14, 2018

The united bid from the three North American countries received 67% of the vote while Morocco garnered 33% of the vote, or 134-65.

"I think Seattle has an advantage on some of those other cities that it's vying with, just based on recent soccer history", said Carr, who has covered three World Cups as ESPN's lead soccer researcher.

The 2026 World Cup is to be the first to feature 48 teams, compared to the 32 that are to compete in Russian Federation and Qatar. The top two teams from each group will advance to a 32-team, tournament style knockout round.

The World Cup is coming back to America.

The decision was revealed at the FIFA Congress in Moscow on Wednesday.

The United States will host 60 out of 80 games, with the remaining 20 split evenly between Mexico and Canada. A Federation Internationale de Football Association inspection commission in April gave it a considerably higher score in an evaluation report than Morocco, noting the extensive infrastructure already in place in the three countries, compared to Morocco, which would have had to construct or renovate all its stadiums and build large amounts of accommodation and transport.

The World Cup is returning to North American soil. An impressive 3.6m attended across the 52 matches, a figure that still stands. Morocco did not have a single one. Canada, Mexico and the USA are home to a combined 491 million people and two of the world's biggest media markets. The AT&T Stadium in Dallas, which can hold 92,000 spectators, is the largest, while the smallest is the 45,000-capacity BMO Field in Toronto.

The U.S. metro areas in the running are Atlanta (Mercedes-Benz Stadium), Baltimore (M&T Bank Stadium), Boston (Gillette Stadium), Cincinnati (Paul Brown Stadium), Dallas (AT&T Stadium), Denver (Sports Authority Field), Houston (NRG Stadium), Kansas City (Arrowhead Stadium), Los Angeles (Rose Bowl and the new National Football League stadium), Miami (Hard Rock Stadium), Nashville (Nissan Stadium), New York (MetLife Stadium), Orlando (Camping World Stadium), Philadelphia (Lincoln Financial Field), San Jose (Levi's Stadium), Seattle (Century Link Field) and Washington (FedEx Field). "As a result of these three nations and countless individuals collaborating to deliver an excellent bid, we are now in position to elevate and advance the sport like never before".

There are four time zones across the United States, which means there are likely to be four separate kick-off times.

The games will be played in 16 cities.

"US President Donald Trump has disparaged Mexicans and wants to build a wall along the US-Mexico border". But even if he secures a second term, he will not be in office by 2026.

Denver was recently named a host city for the 2019 CONCACAF Gold Cup. Stadiums, accommodation and transport were all deemed "high risk" but Morocco said it had plans to spend up to $16 billion to shore up its deficits ahead of the tournament. The bid also expects record ticket and hospitality revenue.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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