Thursday, 21 June, 2018

Nashville in the running to host 2026 FIFA World Cup games

FIFA World Cup Fan 2018 Fest Rocks Off in Moscow FIFA World Cup 2018 to Kick Off With Opening Ceremony Russia Saudi Arabia Match Sputnik Vladimir Astapkovich
Sidney Guerrero | 14 June, 2018, 04:28

In 2010, the US was a finalist to host the 2020 World Cup but lost to Qatar in a vote that was later discredited - but not reversed - because of widespread corruption in FIFA's ranks.

The FIFA Congress selected the United Bid over a bid from Morocco in a 134-65 vote early Wednesday morning. "A lot of hard work has really paid off by USA 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". Their lone opponent was Morocco.

When Carlos Cordeiro left the stage after the United Bid made its final pitch to voters at the Federation Internationale de Football Association congress on Wednesday morning in Moscow, the U.S. Soccer president was plenty confident that the United States, Canada and Mexico would win the rights to host the 2026 World Cup.

When Qatar won the 2022 bid in controversial fashion in 2010, it seemed like having the World Cup return to the United States would be impossible but the 2026 bid was first rate and combining Canada and Mexico was convincing.

The 80 matches in the 2026 tournament, involving an expanded roster of 48 teams, will be held in stadiums scattered throughout the U.S., Canada and Mexico.

Toronto's mayor noted that Canada had little chance of hosting the global soccer tournament on its own, but will now reap the benefits resulting from its participation in the joint bid.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and FIFA president Gianni Infantino
Sputnik Sergey Guneev Russian President Vladimir Putin and FIFA president Gianni Infantino

Will the United States, Mexico and Canada all get automatic bids?

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"Thank you for the incredible privilege", US Soccer President Carlos Cordeiro told voting delegates from 203 countries today. The stadium has also hosted World Cup qualifying games in the past. There is now a professional league that includes impressive infrastructure such as stadiums and training grounds, European games are omnipresent on television, top players now come from across the country, and the World Cup is big business. "It'll be the third World Cup for the Estadio Azteca, its third inauguration". There is also no National Football League stadium within Portland that could be used.

The 2026 World Cup is coming to North America.

President Donald Trump's negative comments on African countries and his bid to tighten immigration restrictions on some nations have likely helped Morocco's cause. Several hotels around the metro would host teams and FIFA VIPs during the tournament.

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

Canadian soccer official calls 2026 World Cup bid vote a 'watershed moment'
Canada will host men's World Cup matches for the first time, while Mexico gets its first taste of the event since 1986. The US hosted the World Cup in 1994, while the tournament was held twice in Mexico (1970 and 1986).

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